CEO of Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) Fred H. Walti determined three key factors to attracting American startups to Egypt.
The Egyptian cleantech ecosystem is a few years behind its cousin, pure tech, but the sector is beginning to show signs of consolidation.
Discussing the new initiatives Mayor Garcetti said: “Reducing L.A.’s carbon footprint means looking at all angles, and buildings are the single greatest source of greenhouse gases in Los Angeles — which is why I set targets in my Sustainable City pLAn to reduce energy use in existing buildings by 14% by 2025 and 30% by 2030.”
Earlier this year, the World Bank announced a fundamental shift in its role of alleviating global poverty, by refocusing its financing efforts towards tackling climate change through the lens of SMEs. Last month, the group launched a new Climate Business Innovation Network (CBIN) during COP22 in Marrakech to help commercialize and diffuse clean technologies through developing countries.
The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator hit its final milestones, with the state-of-the-art facility in the Arts District taking more startup companies into its portfolio and wrapping up construction on an R&D center in conjunction with the LADWP. The $47 million LACI is one of a handful of incubator hubs for budding clean technology companies in the nation.
This was an incredible year for Los Angeles. Here are our highlights of everything we accomplished together in 2016.
SACRAMENTO August 16, 2016 – The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator received a $5 million grant from the California Energy Commission today to establish a Los Angeles Regional Energy Innovation Cluster (LA REIC) that will support clean energy entrepreneurship and networking opportunities in the Southern California coastal region.
The LA REIC was one of several projects funded through the Energy Commission’s Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC) program. The EPIC program funds innovative clean energy technologies and approaches that bring clean energy ideas to market.
The LA REIC will be the central coordinating organization for clean energy start-up companies in the Los Angeles Region and will provide access to resources and facilities to help entrepreneurs commercialize their innovations. The LA REIC will work with key stakeholders in Los Angeles, Orange, Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties to identify the region’s energy needs and connect them with energy technology solutions being developed by early-stage business ventures and universities.
The LA REIC joins the Central Valley Regional Energy Innovation Cluster, the Bay Area Regional Energy Innovation Cluster and the San Diego Regional Energy Innovation Cluster as clean energy entrepreneurship hubs that have received grants from the Energy Commission. The clusters are seen as developmental pathways that will help the state meet its energy and greenhouse gas reduction goals.
EPIC grants were also approved for five projects that identify, test and demonstrate water and energy savings or that develop new approaches that accelerate the deployment of drought resilience strategies. Grants totaling $5 million were awarded to:
- UC Davis for cooling technologies that reduce heat exposure for dairy cattle
- Porifera, Inc., for a low-energy barrier system for water treatment
- Altex Technologies Corp., for a hybrid wet/dry heat exchanger for chiller systems
- Lawrence Livermore National Security LLC for a wastewater treatment process that reduces desalination costs
- Kennedy/Jenks Consultants for a pilot test of a technology that minimizes the fouling of membrane surfaces in wastewater treatment operations
The City of Santa Monica received a $1.5 million EPIC grant to plan and design a microgrid that will incorporate renewable energy, energy storage and electric vehicle charging in that city. The grant stems from the Commission’s EPIC Challenge launched earlier this year. Teams made up of private and governmental entities compete against each other to demonstrate innovative strategies that could become models to help accelerate the development of zero net energy communities. Santa Monica’s entry is one of 13 projects selected to compete in the challenge.
To demonstrate the energy savings and increased user satisfaction possible by pairing comfort-sensing ceiling fans with learning thermostats, UC Berkeley received a $1.8 million EPIC grant. Comfort-sensing ceiling fans have built-in technology that automatically adjusts fan speed to the home environment, while learning thermostats automatically adjust home heating and cooling controls based on space conditions and user’s schedule. UC Berkeley will install the integrated fan/thermostat system in low income multi-family housing in disadvantaged communities throughout the state.
About the California Energy Commission
The California Energy Commission is the state’s primary energy policy and planning agency. The agency was established by the California Legislature through the Warren-Alquist Act in 1974. It has seven core responsibilities: advancing state energy policy, encouraging energy efficiency, certifying thermal power plants, investing in energy innovation, developing renewable energy, transforming transportation, and preparing for energy emergencies.
“The world is changing. We have now the technical ability to solve the problems of climate change.”
LOS ANGELES – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), through its Office of Investment and Innovation (OII), Office of Native American Affairs, Office of Veterans Business Development, and its federal partners consisting of the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, and the Department of Education, announced the 68 winners of the third annual Growth Accelerator Fund Competition. The winners include two Los Angeles based accelerators who will receive $50,000 each out of a total of $3.4 million in prizes to boost the economic impact of accelerators across 32 states and the District of Columbia.
In making the announcement, SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet said:“SBA created the Growth Accelerator Fund Competition in 2014 as a way to make new connections and strengthen existing bonds within America’s small business support network, bringing entrepreneurs and innovators together and connecting them with local and national resources that support small business job creation and growth. These awards deliver on a longstanding commitment at SBA to strengthen and modernize these support systems especially in parts of the country where access to capital has been a major barrier to starting a business. This year’s winners show that our efforts are bearing fruit and further cementing our nation’s most pioneering accelerators, incubators and innovation hubs as major players driving America’s technology startup ecosystem.”
The purpose of the competition is to draw attention and funding to parts of the country where there are gaps in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. While there are entrepreneurial activities occurring nationwide, some are better supported by private sector ecosystems than others. SBA has created connective tissue among the over 200 winning entrepreneurial ecosystems now part of the Growth Accelerator Fund Competition program.
“Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, so the Small Business Administration’s decision to allocate resources for clean tech incubators like LACI in LA not only fosters innovation and creativity, but also grows our city’s economy and is welcome news,” said Congressman Xavier Becerra, member of the United States House of Representatives for California’s 34th congressional district and Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus.
Each organization will receive a cash prize of $50,000 from the SBA. In accepting funds, the accelerators will also be committing to quarterly reporting for one year. They will be required to report metrics including jobs created, funds raised, startups launched and corporate sponsors obtained. This will allow SBA to continue building upon its database of accelerators and their impact, and to develop long-term relationships with the startups and constituents in these innovative and entrepreneurial communities.
“California is home to thousands of innovators and forward thinkers. It’s exciting that LA Cleantech Incubator had added the Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) Program to its toolbox of resources available for our entrepreneurs,” said Victor Parker, U.S. Small Business Administration District Director for the Los Angeles District Office.
Applications were judged by more than 100 experts with entrepreneurial, investment, startup, economic development, capital formation and academic backgrounds from both the public and private sector. The first panel of judges reviewed over 400 applications and presentations and established a pool of 200 highly qualified finalists. The second panels evaluated the finalists’ presentations and pitch videos and selected the 68 winners.
“Accelerators serve entrepreneurs in a broad set of industries and sectors – from manufacturing and tech start-ups, to farming and biotech – with many focused on creating a diverse and inclusive small business community. Through this national competition, we are also empowering accelerators which are led by and support women or other underrepresented groups. SBA will continue to explore ways to creatively harness this powerful network and connect startups with one another and with available government resources. We reported to Congress 138 winners from 2014 and 2015 – made up of 5,000 companies that have raised $1.5 billion and employ nearly 20,000 people. With the addition of the 2016 winners, the number of SBA supported entrepreneurs will significantly grow,” Contreras-Sweet added.
In addition to the Growth Accelerator Fund Competition, SBA’s OII supports investment and innovation in California through two nationwide programs: the Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) Program and the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)/Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program. SBA licenses SBICs and provides $2 in government guaranteed debt for every $1 in private investment. Since the program was created in 1958, over $80 billion has been invested, helping finance 170,000 American small businesses, including companies like COSTCO, Amgen, Apple, FedEx, Staples, and Tesla and Intel. At present, 28 SBICs are located in California and 196 California small businesses received $1.02 billion in financings in FY 2015 alone.
The SBIR/STTR program is a key pillar in the federal government’s strategy to provide seed capital to talented entrepreneurs in science, technology and engineering. Since its inception in 1982, the program has awarded over 158,000 awards with $43.6 billion in funding to early stage companies, including small firms that grew to become many of America’s leading large firms, such as Qualcomm, Biogen, iRobot, and Symantec. The federal government made 1069 SBIR/STTR awards to 570 small businesses in California totaling $465.2 million in FY 2015. In aggregate since 1983, the federal government has made 32,737 awards to 7,558small firms in California for a total of $8.97 billion.
For more information about accelerators and the Growth Accelerator Fund Competition, visit: www.sba.gov/accelerators.
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