Regional Sustainability Award

Cleantech Open Announces California Competition
2011 Regional Winners

Top cleantech entrepreneurs win a "Startup in a Box" prize worth $20,000, and the chance to compete for the National Grand Prize in November.

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., October 7, 2011: The Cleantech Open (, the world’s largest cleantech accelerator, has announced the seven regional finalists that will represent the California region at the national competition in November. These seven innovative entrepreneurial teams were selected from an elite group of 39 cleantech startups that competed in the California Region competition.

The California 2011 California competition finalists are:

  • Air, Water and Waste. This category covers technologies that handle anything from air purification to water filtration to new recycling methods. Kiverdi (San Francisco, CA) won with its high-yield gas-consuming microbes that turn waste gas into oil-based products.
  • Energy Efficiency. This category deals with anything that saves Watts, or deals in "nega-Watts."LoadIQ (Reno, NV) won with its energy-management software that determines how energy is used in buildings, and itemizes energy bills to help ratepayers reduce costs.
  • Green Building. This category includes technologies that enable commercial and residential buildings to be built and function in a sustainable manner. EnFocus Engineering (Sunnyvale, CA) won with its enhanced zero-carbon light that energizes buildings with sunlight.
  • Renewable Energy. This category includes energy solutions derived from the sun, wind, geothermal sources, ocean waves, and more. B2U Solar (San Jose, CA) won with its innovative non-imaging concentrator collector that uses the sun to heat fluids, without the need for mechanical tracking or direct sunlight.
  • Smart Power. This category includes technologies that encompass the smart grid, energy control, and battery storage: ECO Catalytics (Davis, CA) won with a process to develop a catalyst material deposition process that reduces fuel-cell platinum costs by 95 percent.
  • Transportation. This category includes technologies pertaining to new fuels or new forms/methods of transport. Gridtest Systems (Calabasas, CA) won with electric-vehicle infrastructure test tools that provide automated testing of EV charging stations.

In addition to the six regional finalists, May-Ruben Technologies (Minden, NV) won the Regional Sustainability Award, an honor given to the team that most effectively incorporated a triple-bottom-line approach to scaling its business. The company has developed a thermally driven heat pump that can increase the energy efficiency of industrial processes such as process heating and cooling, drying, evaporation and distillation.

Each of these teams has won a "Startup in a Box" prize package that includes combined cash and in-kind services worth up to $20,000. Finalists from all six regions (California, North-Central, Northeast, Pacific Northwest, Rocky Mountain and South-Central) will convene for a final showdown in November at the Cleantech Open 2011 Global Forum in San Jose, California.

"Making it through to the finals is a huge step for these teams, who are already winners among the many teams that entered the California competition," said Rex Northen, executive director of the Cleantech Open. "These innovative entrepreneurs have already received extensive business mentoring, training, and opportunities to showcase their solutions to the public and investment community. Competing at the 2011 Global Forum in November will allow them to take their story to a national audience."

"Innovation requires constant exposure to new ideas, businesses and technologies," said Des King, president of Chevron Technology Ventures. "We believe that the Cleantech Open, and the entrepreneurs it supports, will not only impact the cleantech sector but also present opportunities to improve and enhance energy production and our own business."

This year, the California regional judging was hosted by Chevron , the Global Partner of the Cleantech Open, and took place in the Craneway Pavilion at the historic Ford Point Building in Richmond. The Craneway Pavilion, a stunning 40,000 square foot space enclosed on three sides by two-story glass walls, is located where the Ford Assembly Building (in its day, the largest assembly plant on the west coast) meets Richmond’s waterfront, overlooking San Francisco.

Regional semifinalists "bubble up" to compete for the national cleantech title
In June 2011, 120 semifinalists were selected from a pool of more than talented 285 cleantech entrepreneurs from across the country that submitted entries in the six regional competitions run by the Cleantech Open. From these teams, one team will be selected to advance and represent each region, competing at the national level for a grand prize of up to $250,000 in cash and in-kind services, and an overall prize chest of nearly $1 million. National judging of regional finalists will take place November 15th &16th , 2011 at the Global Cleantech Forum in San Jose, California, with national winners to be announced at the Gala event.

The Cleantech Open is made possible by the generous support provided by our Global Partner, Chevron; National Education Partner, University of Phoenix; and National Sponsors, Autodesk and Wells Fargo. Regional competitions are additionally sponsored by the following corporate partners: Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati (multi-region), Deloitte (multi-region), Jones Lang Lasalle (multi-region), The Dow Chemical Company (multi-region), PricewaterhouseCoopers (multi-region), CTSI, CalCEF, Commercial Energy, Faegre & Benson, Google, Grundfos, Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, Mintz Levin, Patton Boggs, PG&E, Reed Smith, and many others.

The Cleantech Open runs the world’s largest cleantech accelerator. Its mission is to find, fund and foster entrepreneurs with big ideas that address today’s most urgent energy, environmental and economic challenges. A 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, the Cleantech Open provides the infrastructure, expertise and strategic relationships that turn clever ideas into successful global cleantech companies. Since 2006, through its one-of-a-kind annual business competition and mentorship program, the Cleantech Open has enabled 473 clean-technology startups to bring their breakthrough ideas to fruition, helped alumni contestants raise over $300M, and created thousands of green-collar jobs. Fueled by a global network of more than 1,000 volunteers and sponsors, the Cleantech Open unites the public and private sectors in a shared vision for making America’s and the world’s cleantech sectors a thriving economic engine. For more information, visit, or follow us on Twitter and Facebook .

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For more information:
Tim Cox, PR Chair, Cleantech Open
+1-650-369-7784 — This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it