Champagne is likely still popping in the LinkedIn offices in the wake of the company’s extremely successful IPO; others, including start-ups and businesses in the cleantech industry, are not so happy. While LinkedIn’s stock would seemingly have nothing to do with selling cheap solar panels, many anticipate the popularity of LinkedIn’s IPO will compel an exodus of venture capitalists and entrepreneurs from the greentech scene, causing them to return to Web investing.
“No one in cleantech is worth billions,” says Kevin Surace, CEO of Serious Materials, an energy efficiency product and service provider based in Sunnyvale, California. “Yet you can create this small online team that creates billions of dollars in market cap [Groupon].”
Cleantech is slumping because next-gen biofuels, electric cars, and nuclear technology take time to develop—already, a chunk of 10 VC firms have completely pulled back from their investments since 2008. This is likely because investors fear investors remorse in the future while other VCs get rich off the second Web bubble.
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