Category: LACI News

Blog – Attracting Veteran and LGBTQ Founders to the Cleantech Entrepreneur Pipeline

Overview

In our mission to create an inclusive green economy, LACI is working to diversify the entrepreneurs and business founders in our programs and competitions—while also working to diversify our LACI staff. We want our LACI ecosystem and the broader innovation ecosystem to look like the rest of Los Angeles, which is a melting pot of people and cultures. We also believe that the lack of diversity in the green job market leads to missed opportunities in new idea generation and wealth creation. 

In our efforts to diversify the entrepreneur ecosystem, we held a series of events and workshops to hear from entrepreneurs about their experiences and what they think the challenges and opportunities are for entrepreneurs from different backgrounds. Most recently, we held an event called Taking the Lead 2.0, which looked specifically at barriers for founders from veteran and LGBTQ communities.   

 

Veterans Face Challenges in Building Networks and Accessing Capital

More than 75% of veteran entrepreneurs report encountering challenges as they start and grow their business. The top three challenges veterans face are access to capital, limited networks, and difficulty developing relationships with mentors. Of the 200,000 service members transitioning off duty annually, 25% are interested in starting a business while only 4.5% end up pursuing entrepreneurship according to research from Bunker Labs, a non-profit helping veteran entrepreneurs and military spouses find the quickest route to a successful business. A Small Business Administration report found that veteran-owned businesses typically obtain less financing and see lower approval rates than non-veteran owned businesses. Overall, veterans report facing many obstacles to accessing capital and generally lack financial management resources

Another obstacle facing veteran entrepreneurs is the lack of access to professional networks and mentors. Studies show that 50% of veterans relocate to a city other than their hometown after their military service, and while new locations can offer many opportunities, they also present challenges of establishing new networks and mentorships for veterans.

 

LGBTQ Entrepreneurs Face Challenges Being Authentic in the Workforce  

LGBTQ entrepreneurs face challenges raising capital, building trust in the workplace, and accessing networks outside of LGBTQ peers. In research conducted by StartOut, an organization focused on LGBTQ entreprenruship, LGBQT-founded companies raised 11% less capital than their non-LGBTQ peers. In many ways this is connected to the fact that 37% of LGBT startup founders do not come out to their investors—founders can’t form personal and professional connections if they don’t feel they can be their authentic selves at work. This can additionally lead to stress, anxiety and health problems at work. Research from advocacy group GLADD found that LGBTQ employees who are not openly out in front of their colleagues are less likely to remain in their current position than the ones who are. The number of LGBTQ founders or team members in early-stage companies is often small, which makes it difficult to create a strong network and ecosystem of LGBTQ entrepreneurs for advice, opportunities and connections.

 

Solutions to Build Key Networks for Veteran and LGBTQ Founders 

LACI is helping overcome these challenges to Veteran and LGBTQ entrepreneurship in two ways—directly recruiting LGBTQ and Veteran founders into our incubation programs and competitions, and coaching the founders in our current portfolio on how to build a more diverse and inclusive company culture.  

We also partner with organizations focused on capacity and networking building for diverse founders such as Bunker Labs (focused on veteran founders) and StartOut (focused on LGBTQ founders) for networking events and forums such as Taking the Lead 2.0 to kickstart conversation and bring challenges to light. 

 

About Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at LACI 

LACI’s has set diversity, equity and inclusion goals for both its staff and the companies it works with through our suite of entrepreneurial services. We are working to have a higher percentage of women founders in our startups, which is the broader economy benchmark.  We are also working to have the makeup of the LACI team and startup founder staff match the Los Angeles County demographics at 48% latino, 26% white, 14% asian and 8% black. 

LACI aims to build a more inclusive ecosystem to integrate more underrepresented groups into the cleantech sector. Thanks to the generous support of JPMorgan Chase & Co., we launched our efforts in 2016 focused on diversifying our entrepreneur pipeline. In June 2017, we hosted an event called Taking the Lead 1.0: Growing Women and Minority Entrepreneurship and then in May 2019 LACI hosted a follow up event, Taking the Lead 2.0, focused on better engaging LGBTQ and veteran founders. 

Diverse teams and inclusive work environments lead to increased innovation, higher employee retention rates, and better financial performance.  Only by exploring challenges and kickstarting the conversation on diversity, equity and inclusion can we truly build an inclusive green economy. 

Blog – Four Takeaways on Early-stage Innovation from the California Climate Cup

California’s policy makers are setting some of the boldest climate policies in the world—such as SB100 on 100% clean energy, Executive Order B-48-18 on electric vehicle charging infrastructure and vehicle targets, and Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Green New Deal LA’s Sustainable City pLAn. 

Corporate and startup innovators from around the world are responding to these market signals and demonstrating to California’s policy makers how their visionary work is resulting in real action around clean energy and smart grid infrastructure, the urban energy-transport nexus and zero emissions transportation. 

In 2018, in the run up to the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco in September 2018, LACI CEO Matt Petersen and New Energy Nexus Executive Director Danny Kennedy decided their organizations should join forces to create the California Climate Cup. This year, we held the California Climate Cup again to highlight the startup entrepreneurs who are responding to these market signals and to demonstrate to California policy makers the results of their bold action. The California Climate Cup is one of the many ways we are unlocking innovation—we have a suite of programs and competitions to help startups grow, access capital and build networks. This year’s competition helped us identify a number of important trends in early-stage cleantech innovation, including: 

  1. Innovation is happening globally and being drawn to California.
    Of the nine semi-finalists, two-thirds are headquartered out of the state or out of the country, but have focused on California as their target market. This includes WeTrott, e-scooter charging infrastructure, from France, which felt compelled to enter the competition and explore the California market because of the proliferation of scooters in California’s cities. Also the 2019 Climate Cup Grand Prize winner, SparkCharge is based in New York but is focused on California because it is their beachhead market for product and service deployment.   Optimal Solar, based in North Carolina, is expanding to California to bring their novel concentrated solar technology to access a market hungry for advanced solar.
  2. The fundamentals of energy storage technology and the way it is deployed are both being directly challenged.
    The core science underlying batteries is changing before our eyes, with SurgePower Materials bringing to market a plant-based, graphene anode. If scalable, their graphene anode would improve battery safety and performance using sustainable materials.  AC Biode is upending the entire incumbent DC battery platform by developing the first-ever AC battery. SolPad and Hygge Power are challenging the status quo in the residential energy storage market by changing not only the footprint of energy storage but also pushing it to the true grid edge.  SolPad is deploying scalable DC-coupled batteries behind PV panel on rooftops to avoid taking up space in a garage or on the side of a house. Hygge Power is bridging the price and performance gap between UPS systems and traditional home energy storage by providing smart plugs with built-in energy storage to plug into your connected devices.
  3. Startups are bringing solutions to market that are removing barriers to consumers adopting EVs.
    SparkCharge is directly addressing “range anxiety” by offering a product and service where users can order miles of range from their phone and have that charge delivered directly to their EV.  NeoCharge is allowing consumers with garage access and a 220V outlet to smartly split that outlet and share it with their EV, dryer and/or water heater without the cost and complexity of an electrician and permitting.  RideSVP  is opening the option for inter-city travelers to book seats on EVs as part of a green carpool network.
  4. Diversity of industry, knowledge, gender and race from our judges brings critical thinking and different viewpoints.
    In our mission to create an inclusive green economy, we are working to diversify the entrepreneurs and business founders in our programs and competitions. As part of this effort, the California Climate Cup saw a judging review panel made up of someone from a federal research agency, a startup accelerator, a venture capital firm, a corporate automotive, an international energy developer and a startup who was also last year’s Climate Cup 2018 Grand Prize winner. In a traditionally non-diverse sector as cleantech, the panel was also evenly represented by 50% females and 50% people of color.  This led to not only the best overall technologies and products winning their respective categories, but a Category Winner pool of 100% people of color awardees.

At LACI we are building an inclusive green economy by focusing on three interwoven threads: innovation, markets and communities. To unlock innovation we help startup companies and entrepreneurs find solutions to accelerate climate action. At the same time we work to unlock innovation, we are transforming markets through partnerships with policymakers, innovators and market leaders in transportation, energy and sustainable cities and we are enhancing communities through workforce development, pilots and other programs, to ensure that the future green economy works for everyone. 

Keep in touch with LACI to apply for next year’s California Climate Cup or apply to one of our other programs or competitions to unlock innovation.

Press Release – SparkCharge Wins 2019 California Climate Cup, Demonstrating That California Policy Makers’ Bold Policies Inspire World-Class Innovation

Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator and New Energy Nexus Hold Pitch Competition—Brings Attention and $35,000 to Startups With the Most Promising Climate Solutions

Los Angeles, June 27, 2019. The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) and New Energy Nexus announce SparkCharge as the winner of the 2019 California Climate Cup and recipient of the $25 thousand dollar cash prize. The California Climate Cup is sponsored by Volvo Group and the Construction Climate Challenge and Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.  

California’s policy makers are setting some of the boldest climate policies in the world—such as SB100 on 100% clean energy, Executive Order B-48-18 on electric vehicle charging infrastructure and vehicle targets, and Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Green New Deal LA’s Sustainable City pLAn. 

The California Climate Cup highlights the entrepreneurs who are responding to these market signals and demonstrating to California’s policy makers how their visionary work is resulting in real action around clean energy and Smart Grid infrastructure, the urban energy-transport nexus, and zero emissions transportation. 

“The California Climate Cup semi-finalists demonstrate how our state and local policy makers can help unlock innovation to help solve the climate crisis with their bold policy measures,” said Matt Petersen, President and CEO of the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator. “As states like California and cities like Los Angeles lead the way putting the Paris Agreement goals into action, we need entrepreneurs to help deliver essential climate solutions. Congratulations to Joshua Aviv of SparkCharge and the other semifinalists. We look forward to their continued success.”

“California not only is passing ambitious green policies, we are also coming up with policies we can scale and sell to the rest of the world,” said Ben Allen, State Senator. “This is why holding startup competitions like the California Climate Cup is so important—we are demonstrating California’s leadership on climate change solutions, while  helping to amplify and promote the amazing entrepreneurs like Joshua Aviv and SparkCharge that are responding to California’s market signals.” 

“The Volvo Group, like the state of California, is committed to sustainability, innovation and advancing new ideas that are accepted by society,” said Dawn Fenton, Director of Public Affairs for Volvo Group North America. “Sponsoring the California Climate Cup enables the Volvo Group to support innovation that ultimately will help create a cleaner, improved future for the transportation of people and freight, and we were pleased to help support the competition.”

“California is a world leader in a lot of ways—including experiencing the impacts of climate change,” said Danny Kennedy, CEO of New Energy Nexus. “The good news is we are also demonstrating the solutions, especially in LA. The California Climate Cup is a great platform for entrepreneurs to showcase their most innovative climate change solutions and technologies to California’s policy and business leadership. We will shine a light on the startups that will bring us the clean mobility and electricity we need and speed them on their way to commercial success.”

The three category winners are: 

  • Reginald Parker • Optimal Solar, Clean and Smart Grid
  • Joshua Aviv • SparkCharge, Energy / Transportation Nexus
  • Michael K. Opoku • SurgePower, Zero Emissions Transportation 

The nine semifinalists are: 

Clean & Smart Grid

Energy/Transportation Nexus

Zero Emissions Transportation

We are proud that momentum for 2018 California Climate Cup winner, Uwgem Eneyo, SHYFT Power Solutions (formerly Solstice Energy Solutions), continues to build since last year’s event. This growth demonstrates the California Climate Cup’s track record of picking successful startups and founders.  

The semifinalists pitched their cutting-edge climate solutions in several events across California—on June 25 in Los Angeles to an audience of LA’s innovation ecosystem, on June 26 in Mountain View at the Hub 335, and at Volvo Group and the Construction Climate Challenge’s innovation hub on June 27 in Sacramento at the Capitol Building, with Senator Ben Allen, from California’s 26th district. 

About LACI

The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI), a City of Los Angeles established nonprofit organization, is creating an inclusive green economy by: unlocking innovation through working with startups to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies, transforming markets through partnerships with policymakers, innovators and market leaders in transportation, energy and sustainable cities; and enhancing communities through workforce development, pilots and other programs. Founded as an economic development initiative by the City of Los Angeles and its Department of Water & Power (LADWP), LACI is recognized as one of the most innovative business incubators in the world by UBI. In the past eight years, LACI has helped 78 portfolio companies raise $221M in funding, $220M in revenue, create 1,750 jobs, and deliver more than $393M in long term economic value. Learn more at laci.org

About New Energy Nexus

New Energy Nexus (NEX) is a global organization that supports the next wave of entrepreneurs with funds, programs, and connections that reflect emerging trends in the clean energy economy. Since 2004, New Energy Nexus (formerly known as the California Clean Energy Fund) has leveraged $1.5 billion in investment, invested in more than 100 clean energy enterprises, and launched industry leading centers for collaboration. Our network includes more than 100 incubators and accelerators, funders and development organizations from 29 countries around the world. We have offices in California, Shanghai, Singapore, Indonesia and Vietnam.

Media Contact

Sarah Bryce
424-362-9462
sarah@laci.org

Press Release – Mayor Eric Garcetti and LACI Announce First Cohort for New Impact Acceleration Program for Small Businesses and Startups in City of Los Angeles

13 Small Business and Startup Founders from Low Income Neighborhoods and Underrepresented Populations Participate in Inaugural Founders Business Accelerator Program Created with the City of Los Angeles

Los Angeles, May 30, 2019. The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) announces the first cohort of 13 small business founders selected to participate in the Founders Business Accelerator (FBA), a small business and startup acceleration program to help underrepresented small business and startup founders in low income neighborhoods in Los Angeles grow their business and increase their community, social and environmental impact.

“Small businesses are the beating heart of our economy—job creators that share Los Angeles’ innovative spirit with the world,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “Working together with LACI, we’re ensuring small business owners have the tools they need to reach new markets, grow their bottom-line and thrive.”

The FBA program will help business founders grow their businesses by pairing them with mentors to refine their goals, finances and strategies, as well as provide up to $5,000 in legal, human resources and marketing consulting services. Additionally, founders will learn how to create and increase their business’ community, environmental and social impact.

“Many of the diverse business owners we encounter are poised to grow exponentially, given the right know-how, mentoring, facilities and network,” said Sonya Blake, Director of Community Business in the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development. “The vibrant ecosystem the City has built at LACI is exactly what these small businesses need to succeed.”

“Los Angeles is creating opportunities to give small businesses the tools they need to thrive and revitalize communities,” said Councilmember Paul Krekorian. “By investing in our small business owners through the Founders Business Accelerator program, we’re helping promote job growth, enhancing our local economy and ensuring that our entrepreneurs succeed.”

“I believe in the power of entrepreneurship and I believe that small businesses are central to the health and well-being of our communities,” said Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson. “I am proud to support the Founders Business Accelerator, which helps founders increase their social, economic and environmental impact. I know that with a little expert training and guidance, the incredible entrepreneurs from South L.A. and across this region can make their businesses really soar.”

“From leading the development of the City’s business portal to creating the Small Business Academy—supporting small, women and minority owned businesses has been a strong focus of my work throughout my career,” said Councilwoman Monica Rodriguez. “I am proud to support the Founders Business Accelerator—this program is an innovative way to create good jobs and put more resources back into our communities.”

The first workshop of the FBA program was held on May 11, 2019 and the program runs through July 2019. LACI vetted almost 200 applications for the first cohort, illustrating the opportunity and interest amongst small business founders in L.A. Applicants were accepted to the program based on ability to scale, commitment to social and environmental impact and their company’s business model. All the founders live and have their businesses located in the City of Los Angeles.

“Many people know LACI for our work with cleantech startups—now thanks to the City of Los Angeles, we are honored to offer business accelerator services to small businesses and early stage startup founders in neighborhoods across the city,” said Matt Petersen, CEO of LACI. “We are excited to work with this first cohort of founders to help them increase their impact, create a sustainable business model and access capital.”

The first cohort of businesses includes:

The Founders Business Accelerator is a free program designed to help small businesses grow, prompted by the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development. It is funded by the Community Development Block Grant funding via the Economic and Workforce Development Department. Additional support was provided by Councilmembers Marqueece Harris-Dawson and Monica Rodriguez to recruit applicants and support the program.

About LACI

The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI), a City of Los Angeles-established nonprofit organization, is creating an inclusive green economy by: unlocking innovation through working with startups to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies, transforming markets through partnerships with policymakers, innovators and market leaders in transportation, energy and sustainable cities; and enhancing communities through workforce development, pilots and other programs. Founded as an economic development initiative by the City of Los Angeles and its Department of Water & Power (LADWP), LACI is recognized as one of the most innovative business incubators in the world by UBI. In the past seven years, LACI has helped 78 portfolio companies raise $221M in funding, $220M in revenue, create 1,750 jobs, and deliver more than $393M in long term economic value. Learn more at laci.org

Contact

Sarah Bryce
424.362.9462
sarah@laci.org

New report: Cities could slash GHG emissions by an additional 35% through startup and corporation innovation, while helping create a $5 trillion market for cleantech solutions

The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator and C40 Cities, with support from PwC, call for enhanced city collaboration with startup entrepreneurs and corporate innovators to accelerate climate action and help secure a 1.5°C future

 MADRID, December 09, 2019—Cities that accelerate climate action by supporting cleantech startups and corporate innovation could supercharge urgent global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate the worst impacts of the climate crisis. That’s the conclusion of a new report released today at the 2019 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Madrid, Spain, by C40 Cities and the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI), with research support from PwC. The report’s recommendations and call to action offer cities a pathway to use innovation hubs or “melting pots” that better empower entrepreneurs to help secure a 1.5°C future.

 In their new report, Cleantech Cities: Accelerating Climate Action Through Startups and Corporate Innovation, C40, LACI and PwC estimate the potential of new technologies and disruptive innovation in cities by 2030 could surpass 1.3 GtCO2e in greenhouse gas reductions from buildings, transport and waste each year. That’s roughly a 35 percent enhancement to a 2°C emissions reduction pathway, with more immediate impact. Urban climate innovation is also estimated to create just over $5 trillion in new global investment opportunities by 2030, plus inclusive opportunities for job growth, public health improvements, and other co-benefits.

 Cities, including Los Angeles, New York, Singapore, and Vancouver, are already bright spots in the global effort to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Specifically, city governments are leading with bold policies and by removing barriers to climate innovation for startups and corporations. However, some cities struggle to get ahead of innovation and are often poorly equipped to foster new entrepreneurial solutions that would accelerate climate action. 

 Innovative businesses and cleantech startups possess huge potential to act on climate change by leveraging private-sector skills and investment that cities need. The rapid rise and commercialization of e-scooters as a last-mile mobility solution is just one example of ultra-high growth start-up innovation that can help reduce emissions. For every company like Bird or Lime, there is a pipeline of many more entrepreneurs and emerging technologies that are stuck navigating an uncertain ecosystem of support.

 To unlock the full potential of urban innovation and significantly accelerate climate action, C40, LACI and PwC are calling for closer coordination between all members of urban innovation ecosystems, including city governments, startups & corporate innovators, intermediaries (such as tech incubators and accelerators), academia, investors, citizens and communities. The report’s authors interviewed a range of city officials, innovators and ecosystem actors to inform three key recommendations that would drive innovation in advanced mobility solutions, intelligent energy systems, and more conscious consumption:

  1. Cities should invite, shape, and direct startup and corporate innovation to accelerate climate action. 
  2. Startups need guidance to help them find incubators or partners that work closely with cities and can help facilitate connections across the urban innovation ecosystem.
  3. A new platform and global partnership should be forged to help cities better work with startup and corporate innovation to accelerate climate action

The report also highlights 28 tools and instrumentsranging across tech clusters, startup support services, finance, market access, and pilot projectsthat enable innovation and scaling of urban climate innovation.

“Cities are where the future happens first. Throughout history they have been centres of innovation and accelerators of progress to tackle the greatest challenges facing humanity,” said Mark Watts, Executive Director, C40 Cities. “Today, there is no greater challenge we face than the growing climate crisis. Cities are major contributors to the emissions that are causing climate breakdown, but they are also where the solutions are being developed, tested and scaled up. By creating supportive policies and partnerships for those innovators and start-ups within their cities, C40 mayors can help drive even faster action towards securing the future we want.”

“As the City of L.A.’s first Chief Sustainability Officer and now working with startup entrepreneurs at LACI, I know firsthand how innovation can help cut carbon, improve people’s lives, and address inequity in every part of a city,” said Matt Petersen, CEO, Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI), and board chair of Climate Mayors. “Given the scope of the climate crisis, we’re calling on city leaders around the world to both set bold policy goals and empower cleantech startup entrepreneurs and corporate innovators. Taken together, these measures can help mayors realize an additional 35 percent reduction in GHGs and $5 trillion in economic potential.”

“We were struck by the speed at which high-growth businesses can accelerate climate action at city-level,” said Dan Dowling, Director, Cities & Urbanisation, PwC. “City governments are an essential catalyst in this and can play a leading role by unlocking barriers in the climate innovation and investment ecosystem so that action can be rapidly scaled in partnership with the private sector.” 

 

 

About C40 

C40 Cities connects 94 of the world’s greatest cities to take bold climate action, leading the way towards a healthier and more sustainable future. Representing 700+ million citizens and one quarter of the global economy, mayors of C40 cities are committed to delivering on the most ambitious goals of the Paris Agreement at the local level, as well as to cleaning the air we breathe. The current chair of C40’s steering committee is Eric Garcetti, Mayor of Los Angeles; and three-term Mayor of New York City Michael R. Bloomberg serves as President of the Board. C40’s work is made possible by our three strategic funders: Bloomberg Philanthropies, Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF), and Realdania.

 About LACI 

The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI), a private nonprofit organization, is creating an inclusive green economy by unlocking innovation (through working with startups to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies), transforming markets (through partnerships in transportation, energy and sustainable cities) and enhancing communities (through workforce development, pilots and other programs). Founded as an economic development initiative by the City of Los Angeles and its Department of Water & Power (LADWP), LACI is recognized as one of the most innovative business incubators in the world by UBI. In the past seven years, LACI has helped 108 startups raise $221M in funding, $220M in revenue, create 1,750 jobs, and deliver more than $393M in long term economic value. Learn more at laci.org

 About PwC

At PwC, our purpose is to build trust in society and solve important problems. We’re a network of firms in 157 countries with over 276,000 people who are committed to delivering quality in assurance, advisory and tax services. Find out more and tell us what matters to you by visiting us at www.pwc.com.

Our 800-strong global Sustainability and Climate Change practice facilitates leading action on climate change and the Sustainable Development Goals. Our Cities & Urbanisation team supports both city and national governments to help address the challenges of rapid urbanisation and create more competitive, resilient and inclusive cities.

PwC refers to the PwC network and/or one or more of its member firms, each of which is a separate legal entity. Please see www.pwc.com/structure for further details.

© 2019 PwC. All rights reserved.

Press Release – LACI Announces New Workforce Development Program for Green Job Training – Participants Will Learn Job Skills and Train with Startups for On-the-Job Experience

Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator Opens Call for Applications for Advanced Prototyping Center Fellowship Program to Bring Under-Represented Groups Into the Cleantech Sector

Los Angeles, May 21, 2019. The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) has opened their call for applications to the Advanced Prototyping Center (APC) Fellowship Program.  Applicants must apply by May 24, and commit to attending the Career Exploration Day on June 7 at the APC, and be at least 18 years old. For more information and to apply visit laincubator.org/apcfellowship/

Participants will gain both technical and interpersonal skills in addition to industry-recognized credentials. Upon acceptance to the program, 30 participants will attend a two-week training ‘bootcamp’, culminating in a career fair with cleantech startups. Then 12-15 successful participants will complete a three-month internship with a cleantech startup or LACI Portfolio Company. 

The APC Fellowship Program will help create a green jobs pipeline for both participants and LACI start up companies. The program also supports Mayor Garcetti’s recently-launched Green New Deal L.A./Sustainable City pLAn which set a goal of 300,000 green jobs by 2035 and 400,000 by 2050.

“In order to build a truly inclusive green economy, we have to ensure that everyone has the skills and abilities to access green jobs”, said Matt Petersen, CEO of LACI. “We are grateful for the support of our partners at the Wells Fargo Foundation and Annenberg Foundation and also the support of our legislators Assemblymember Miguel Santiago and Senator Maria Elena Durazo. Over the past seven years, LACI’s programs and startups have created over 2,000 green jobs, yet we know we need to do more to create opportunities for everyone to join the cleantech economy.”

Participants in the APC Workforce Development program will not only work in state-of-the-art facilities, they will also be trained and mentored by an experienced job coach and machine shop tech. They will be introduced to the ecosystem of cleantech startups at the LaKretz Innovation Campus and to the LACI Portfolio Companies to ensure employment success and longevity in the green economy.

About the Advanced Prototyping Center

The LACI Advanced Prototyping Center (APC) is made possible by the LA Department of Water and Power & U.S. Economic Development Agency. The APC a world-class facility with advanced prototyping and industrial equipment , chemistry and electronics labs, 3D printing, and other machinery that is managed by LACI expert staff who are ready to share and teach their skills. A community of entrepreneurs, artists, inventors and startups working in a state-of-the-art collaborative workspace, APC capabilities include a waterjet, CNC mill, CNC lathe, 3D and Roland large format printing, and more. Find out more at laci.org/apc

About LACI

The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI), a nonprofit organization, is creating an inclusive green economy by: unlocking innovation through working with startups to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies, transforming markets through partnerships with policymakers, innovators and market leaders in transportation, energy and sustainable cities; and enhancing communities through workforce development, pilots and other programs. Founded as an economic development initiative by the City of Los Angeles and its Department of Water & Power (LADWP), LACI is recognized as one of the most innovative business incubators in the world by UBI. In the past seven years, LACI has helped 78 portfolio companies raise $221M in funding, $220M in revenue, create 1,750 jobs, and deliver more than $393M in long term economic value. Learn more at laci.org

Contact
Sarah Bryce
424.362.9462
sarah@laci.org

Press Release – Mayor Garcetti Announces Zero Emissions Mobility Pilot Fund with LACI to Advance L.A.’s Green New Deal and Emissions Goals throughout the L.A. Region

EV Scooter and Charging Pilots from LACI and LADWP Showcased at LKIC; TEP Marks One Year Anniversary with Announcement of New Partners Audi, Nissan and Proterra

Los Angeles, May 2, 2019. Fresh from his announcement for a Green New Deal for Los Angeles, Mayor Eric Garcetti joined the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) and the Transportation Electrification Partnership (TEP) to showcase innovation in L.A. to help accomplish the ambitious goals he set out earlier this week.

Mayor Garcetti helped announce a new mobility pilot program for clean air, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and bringing the benefits of the green economy to disadvantaged communities. The Zero Emissions Mobility and Community Pilot Project Fund will dedicate at least $300,000 for proposed solutions—along with technical assistance from LACI and TEP partners—in three disadvantaged communities in the City and County of Los Angeles. Proposals from communities as well as mobility solution providers will be accepted starting today.

The Mayor also showcased zero emissions mobility pilot projects installed by LACI and LADWP at the La Kretz Innovation Campus which is a living lab for new technologies. LADWP proposed the idea and provided funding for these solutions, including EV scooters and charging solutions from LACI portfolio companies CLEVR (i.e., ‘scooter SUV’), FreeWire (i.e., mobile EV charging), MOEV (i.e., EV charging power control), Perch Mobility (i.e., scooter/e-bike charging logistics solution) along with TEP partner BMW (i.e., the first North American pilot of their BMW Motorrad X2City kick-scooter).

“We cannot wait another moment to fight the climate crisis with everything at our disposal—and that starts with lower emissions and more options on our roads and rail lines,” said Mayor Garcetti. “The Zero Emissions Mobility and Community Pilot Project Fund will help us meet the goals of L.A.’s Green New Deal by delivering creative solutions to cut pollution, spur innovation, and make good on our commitment to environmental justice in every community.”

“Piloting zero emissions mobility solutions that help meet the needs of disadvantaged communities while reducing air pollution and GHGs is key to meeting the targets in the TEP 2028 Roadmap,” said LACI CEO Matt Petersen. “Today, we are proud today to shine a light on some of the amazing LACI startup companies and partners who are helping the Mayor meet the goals in his updated Sustainable City pLAn.”

“CARB is proud to be a Transportation Electrification Partner with the City of Los Angeles: We need all hands on deck to turn the supertanker around,” said CARB Chair Mary D. Nichols. “The challenge we face is to transform the entire transportation sector, and to do it in a thoughtful way at an aggressive pace. This investment in innovative mobility options will provide significant benefits for communities of concern and important lessons to expand these and similar programs throughout the city, and the state.”

“Working together we can all make a difference in fighting air pollution and combating climate change. That’s why it’s important to engage our customers in the communities they live and drive in,” said David Wright, LADWP’s General Manager. “This program will help spur even more innovative ideas to get more people out of their gas-guzzling and polluting cars and into clean-air EVs.”

In addition, global innovators Nissan North America, Audi and Proterra were announced today as TEP’s newest members, representing an investment in L.A. as well as a commitment to zero emissions transportation. These companies join 20 other TEP partners, including Mayor Garcetti, CARB, SCE, DWP, Metro, County of L.A., BMW, PCS Energy, Itron and others.

The Zero Emissions Mobility and Community Pilot Project Fund will be deployed in disadvantaged communities throughout the City and County of Los Angeles in areas that need zero emission mobility solutions and reduced air pollution and co-benefits such as workforce and economic development. The Pilot Project Fund is supported by funds from TEP partners along with the State of California’s California Workforce Development Board (CWDB). Assemblymember Miguel Santiago and California Senate President pro Tempore Emeritus Kevin de León were key champions to help LACI secure the CWDB funding in 2018.

About the Transportation Electrification Partnership

The Transportation Electrification Partnership (TEP), formed by LACI in May 2018, is an unprecedented multi-year partnership among local, regional, and state stakeholders to accelerate progress towards transportation electrification and zero emissions goods movement in the Greater L.A. region in advance of the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games. TEP released the Zero Emissions 2028 Roadmap in September 2018 focusing on actions needed to achieve the shared goal of 25% additional reductions in GHGs and air pollution. The TEP Leadership Group includes the Mayor of L.A., County of Los Angeles, CARB, LADWP, SCE, Metro, and LACI.

About LACI

The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI), a private nonprofit organization, is creating an inclusive green economy by unlocking innovation (through working with startups to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies), transforming markets (through partnerships in transportation, energy and sustainable cities) and enhancing communities (through workforce development, pilots and other programs). Founded as an economic development initiative by the City of Los Angeles and its Department of Water & Power (LADWP), LACI is recognized as one of the most innovative business incubators in the world by UBI. In the past seven years, LACI has helped 78 portfolio companies raise $221M in funding, $220M in revenue, create 1,750 jobs, and deliver more than $393M in long term economic value. Learn more at laci.org

Contact
Sarah Bryce
424.362.9462
sarah@laci.org

Press Release – Climate Solutions Startup Competition to Showcase California’s Innovation Ecosystem

Applications Open for California Climate Cup — Putting the Call for a Green New Deal into Action

LOS ANGELES (April 15, 2019) The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) and New Energy Nexus are seeking solutions and entrepreneurs to accelerate climate action in California and around the world. Applications for the California Climate Cup startup competition will be accepted until May 15, 2019. The grand prize winner will receive $25,000 in non-dilutive award money and priceless exposure to California’s business and policy ecosystem.

In its second year, the California Climate Cup debuted at the 2018 Global Climate Action Summit, where innovative startups from around the world pitched their technology and ideas for innovation to decision-makers across the world.

“Winning the first ever California Climate Cup was a great experience because it gave me unparalleled visibility with corporates, funders and state agencies. California has created an amazing innovation ecosystem and it is a thrill for me that Solstice’s IoT software is one of the game-changing climate solutions that is building the inclusive green economy,” said Ugwem I. Eneyo, co-founder and CEO, Solstice Energy Solutions.

“As the fifth largest economy in the world, California has visionary leaders who have put policies in place to shift markets and unleash innovation from entrepreneurs,” said Matt Petersen, President and CEO of LACI. “These market signals ensure California remains a global leader and innovator in driving progressive environmental initiatives forward while growing our economy. The entrepreneurs who compete for the California Climate Cup are putting the Green New Deal into action and serving as an example to other regions.”

“California is a world leader in a lot of ways—including experiencing the impacts of climate change,” said Danny Kennedy, CEO of New Energy Nexus. “The good news is we are also demonstrating the solutions, especially in LA. The California Climate Cup is a great platform for entrepreneurs to showcase their most innovative climate change solutions and technologies to California’s policy and business leadership. We will shine a light on the startups that will bring us the clean mobility and electricity we need and speed them on their way to commercial success.”

The California Climate Cup will showcase inspiring ideas from startups across three cities over three days.

  • June 25 – Los Angeles. Nine semi-finalists (three per category) will pitch their ideas to a panel of distinguished judges at La Kretz Innovation Campus in the heart of downtown Los Angeles. Category winners will be announced.
  • June 26 – San Francisco. Semi-finalists will network with and pitch to Silicon Valley entrepreneurs and VCs.
  • June 27 – Sacramento. Semi-finalists will pitch to policymakers in California’s capital. Overall winner will be announced at the State Capitol to an audience of policymakers and agency officials.

We are seeking applicants who have a solution that is deployable in California and potentially scalable across the world. Companies must be less than five years old, with less than $5M in revenue, and have a product in pilot, beta, or prototype stage. We are looking for companies that are answering the call for a Green New Deal—competition categories address the greatest climate resilience and carbon reduction needs in critical sectors and winning companies will be working to specifically address SB100 or the goals of the Transportation Electrification Partnership.

 

 

Clean & Smart Grid

• Renewable energy

• Energy storage

• Digital and physical (wildfire) grid security

• Grid load optimization & efficient technology bundling

• Transactive energy

Energy/Transportation Nexus

• EV charging and energy storage infrastructure

• Charging solutions for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles and fleets

• Demand response, smart charging, charge management (V2G, V2H)

Zero Emissions Transportation

• Goods movement and urban logistics

• People movement, urban mobility and access

• First and last mile

 

The California Climate Cup application deadline is May 15, 2019.  For more information and to apply visit laci.org/climatecup.

 

About LACI

The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI), a private nonprofit organization, is creating an inclusive green economy by unlocking innovation (working with startups to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies), transforming markets (through partnerships in transportation, energy and sustainable cities) and enhancing communities (through workforce development, pilots and other programs). Founded as an economic development initiative by the City of Los Angeles and its Department of Water & Power (LADWP), LACI is recognized as one of the most innovative business incubators in the world by UBI. In the past seven years, LACI has helped 78 portfolio companies raise $221M in funding, $220M in revenue, create 1,750 jobs, and deliver more than $393M in long term economic value. Learn more at laci.org.

 

About New Energy Nexus

New Energy Nexus (NEX) is a global organization that supports the next wave of entrepreneurs with funds, programs, and connections that reflect emerging trends in the clean energy economy. Since 2004, New Energy Nexus (formerly known as the California Clean Energy Fund) has leveraged $1.5 billion in investment, invested in more than 100 clean energy enterprises, and launched industry leading centers for collaboration. Our network includes more than 100 incubators and accelerators, funders and development organizations from 29 countries around the world. We have offices in California, Shanghai, Singapore, Indonesia and Vietnam.

 

Media Contact:

Sarah Bryce

media@laincubator.org

Press Release – LACI Diversity & Inclusion Efforts are Subject of a USC Case Study

LACI was selected by researchers at the University of Southern California’s Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies to be the subject of a case study about diversity and inclusion. The study explores the first year of LACI’s Diversity and Inclusion efforts, including key decision points, achievements, and challenges faced along the way. The case study is being distributed through USC’s partnership with Harvard Business Review and the CaseCentre for use in classrooms around the world.

 

AIR Presents (Dis)Location

Enjoy selected findings by Beatriz Jaramillo, Elana Mann and Brittany Ransom created while artists-in-residence at Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI).

(Dis)Location
January 23 – February 2, 2020

Royale Projects
432 Alameda Street
Los Angeles, CA 90013 (Entrance on Seaton between 4th & 5th)
Open Thursday – Sunday, 12PM – 5PM

Opening Reception
Thursday, January 23, 2020
5PM – 8PM

Panel Discussion
Sunday, Jan 26, 2020
3PM – 5PM

Contact
AIR@laci.org

(Dis)Location presents selected findings by Beatriz Jaramillo, Elana Mann and Brittany Ransom created while artists-in-residence at Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI). Through diverse media and approaches, each artist engages in a deep study of place, highlighting the loss of Los Angeles wetlands, one path towards mitigating toxic manufacturing, and tree-destroying beetles that substantially contribute to the spread of wild fires.   A bridge between land and water, wetlands are among the most productive ecosystems in the world. Their sponge-like ability to absorb and release water creates a natural filtration system, and protects against extreme weather events. However, in order to filter water and mitigate damaging climate events, wetlands require space to breathe.

Early photographs of Los Angeles evidence thousands of acres of wetlands, with key areas stretching from mid-city to South LA, and the entirety of Marina Del Rey. Up to 95% of this natural habitat is now lost to urban development; and with this, we lose the potential to capture blue carbon, house diverse ecosystems, and recharge underground aquifers. In In Between: Los Angeles Wetlands, Beatriz Jaramillo explores the contradiction between continual urban expansion and nurturing this vital natural resource. Through research at Ballona Wetlands, Jaramillo has created a series of works in engraved aluminum and porcelain juxtaposing the serenity of the wetlands with hard edge representations of the urban infrastructure that contribute to their demise. With each wetlands area positioned within 5% of the frame, the work establishes a picture of just how much we have lost.

Elana Mann’s Dark Victory discusses the life cycle of petroleum-based black pigment, found in everything from tires to water bottles; and a possible solution in LACI portfolio company Nature Coatings. Originally presented at CicLAvia: Heart of LA Celebrating UCLA 100, the work is a collaboration with Nature Coatings, a company who  transform wood waste into high performing black pigment. Mann worked with Nature Coatings to create paint from their non-toxic pigment; and invited CicLAvia guests to make prints using this paint and the bicycle as a mobile printing press. In (Dis)Location, Mann presents documentation of this public engagement about the lineage and impact of everyday products, and ways we can improve our own carbon footprint.

Another unlikely Southern California dislocator is a tiny pest you have likely never seen. One of the most destructive wildfire seasons in California history (2018) was due in large part to swarms of silent architects no bigger than a grain of rice. Referred to by a Columbia University study as “one of the world’s most aggressive tree-killing insects,” bark beetles thrive in drought. They burrow in bark, building armies by laying eggs throughout the tree’s living tissue. While healthy trees create a resin that drowns paths and pushes the beetles out, drought-stricken trees have no capacity to do so. As the tress hollow, they become kindling for the spread of devastating wildfires. Bark beetles have killed more than 27 million trees in the greater Los Angeles area alone. As the beetles eat their way through trees, they leave behind perfectly preserved lines that resemble complex city systems. These lines are the subject of Parallel Pathways, a series of works by Brittany Ransom that study the immense impact bark beetles have on the future landscape of California. Pointing to specific places of flow, obstruction, and planned versus haphazard pathways, the bark beetle’s paths are recreated in reference to our own human building patterns and possible self destruction.

Also on view at Royale Projects:
Joel Otterson: Among Others
Jen Aitken: 3, 4½, 7½, 12

With special thanks to Royale Projects for their ongoing support of AIR.