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Silicon Valley's emerging clean-tech cluster

siliconvalley.jpgGreen VC blogger, Rob Day, is griping about how Silicon Valley seems to be trailing other areas of the world in developing clean technologies. He looks at data that suggests investors are investing less money in Bay Area clean tech companies than you'd expect. The reason, he explains, in this noteworthy post is because no "cluster" had developed for clean-tech like the ones that exist for software, semiconductors and biotech.

That might be changing though, as our column in today's Merc suggests (scroll down to bottom-half). True,...

...our piece is highly anecdotal. It would be great to see a more definitive study. We'd also point out that statistics seem somewhat subjective on clean-tech investing, and we took issue with Day's conclusions in the comment on his post. The available stats appear to include investments in almost any industrial design and process company, for example, including many borderline cases. Though it is easy to criticize, and we'll have to do a more definitive check. Anyway, the main point is, its hard to believe the Bay Area lags other places, at least nationally. But it is true that it doesn't have any obvious lead, and so Day's point is well taken.


Thanks for the link, Matt -

Actually, I thought I was pretty clear that it's the fact that so many OTHER tech industries are clustered in the bay area that makes cleantech look a bit anemic -- only in comparison, since it's not really clustered here while IT/Comm/Biotech are. Actually, there are more than a few really strong cleantech companies located here locally. It's just that the industry overall is relatively dispersed, geographically.

As for the stats, you're exactly right. One quarter's dealflow does not make any kind of definitive argument. But it was a good excuse to talk about the lack of clustering here. At least so far... It sounds like we both think that has a good chance of changing over time.

So I think we share the same gripes, or lack thereof...

- rd

Rob Day on May 24, 2005 9:47 AM
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