Greetings from David Kenney
President & Executive Director

More People + More Capital = More Impact

This week, I spent three days in San Francisco at the annual Cleantech Forum, a conference that brings together the thought leaders, investors, corporate partners, startups, and intermediaries who drive the clean economy. The agenda introducing Monday's keynote speaker, Katherine Wilkinson, lead writer of the New York Times bestseller Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming, included these lines:

"A couple of things have happened since last January’s Cleantech Forum.
One, the warnings of how bad things might get and how inadequate the responses are to date seem to be growing louder.... Two, we are finding more and more investors who are looking to articulate and quantify the impact their investee companies are having."

Wilkinson is VP of communication and engagement at Project Drawdown, whose comprehensive plan informs much of our work here at VertueLab and inspires us to do just what the above quote references - quantify and communicate the impact of our portfolio companies. I found this experience to be both validating of the approach we're taking and reassuring to know that more and more people are joining in this effort to ensure that more capital is being invested to have a real impact on the climate challenge.

At the event, I also had the good fortune of introducing on-stage two of the many companies we've been helping, OCO Corporation and Sironex Renewables, and both presented short pitches to the attendees. It was terrific exposure for early stage cleantech startups!

Best wishes,
Cleantech Startups Share $1.5M from Business Oregon
Funding will help advance new technologies supported by VertueLab

Seven cleantech startups affiliated with VertueLab were recently awarded $1.5 million in grants from Business Oregon’s Enhanced Phase 0 Program. Here are the winning technologies ( read full story):

  • RUTE Foundation Systems' wind turbine tower foundation that uses less concrete (video above)
  • Onboard Dynamics' mobile natural gas refueling system for LNG vehicles
  • InPipe Energy's turbine technology that generates power from municipal water pipes
  • Gadusol Laboratories' process for producing nontoxic sunscreen
  • Kerr Avionics' system that saves jet fuel by enabling pilots to land during dense fog
  • Diatomix’ green chemistry additives for paints and cleaners that improve indoor air quality
  • Chargeway’s software that makes electric charging easier to access for EV owners.

NOTE: The application deadline for the next round of grants from the same program is February 1. Read more about that below under "Funding Opportunities & Upcoming Events."
Forbes Features Wheyward Spirit's Spirit
Forbes magazine ran a story on Wheyward Spirit, a Eugene, Oregon, startup that is using excess whey from dairies to make vodka ( pictured, above), a process that cuts food waste and has a significantly lower carbon and water footprint than equivalent grain based spirits. Read more in Forbes.

Micro-Hydropower Turbine Based on Nature's Patterns
Bladerunner Energy of Bend, Oregon, is developing a micro-hydro energy generation system based on biomimicry that can be used in irrigation canals, rivers/streams/ocean currents, and towed behind boats. Read more in the Bend Bulletin.

The Renewal Workshop Makes Outside Magazine
A story in Outside Magazine about The Renewal Workshop, which saves 400 gallons of water and one pound of carbon for every damaged/returned garment the Cascade Locks, Oregon, company "renews," states, "... the Renewal Workshop addresses a hypocrisy few in the outdoor industry ever talk about: every shirt made from recycled water bottles and every jacket made with recycled-polyester insulation will wind up in a landfill." Read the full story.

Arcimoto Raises $4.5M for Fun Utility Vehicle Production
Arcimoto, the Eugene, Oregon, maker of a three-wheeled electric vehicle , has raised $4.5 million in financing that positions the company to begin delivering on its 3,250 customer pre-orders, which represent approximately $49 million in anticipated sales revenue. Read the Forbes Magazine story.
Want to Join VertueLab and Make an Impact?
We're hiring a development director

We're looking for an enthusiastic and experienced individual to join our team to develop and execute a comprehensive fundraising plan, lead the execution of our fundraising activities, develop and manage a portfolio of major gift prospects, identify target foundations, steward ongoing relationships with donors and key stakeholders, and more. Read the full description.
A Poster Child for Friedman's Green New Deal
VertueLab's focus is perfectly aimed at the Four Zeroes

According to Thomas Friedman's recent piece in the New York times, the goals of his version of a Green New Deal would be what energy innovator Hal Harvey has dubbed “the four zeros.”

  1. Zero-net energy buildings: buildings that produce as much energy as they consume
  2. Zero-waste manufacturing: stimulating manufacturers to design and build products that use fewer raw materials and that are easily disassembled and recycled
  3. A zero-carbon grid: If we can combine renewable power generation at a utility scale with some consumers putting up their own solar panels and windmills that are integrated with the grid, and with large-scale storage batteries, we really could, one day, electrify everything carbon-free (photo of community solar project in the UK)
  4. Zero-emissions transportation: a result of combining electric vehicles and electric public transportation with a zero-carbon grid

These goals are at the heart of VertueLab's mission as a climate impact accelerator. We collaborate with like-minded donors and organizations to fund cleantech innovators. We offer those innovators a suite of expert support services. And we measure and communicate the real impact these new technologies are having on the climate crisis. Join us!

Submission Deadline: February 1
Business Oregon's expanded Enhanced Phase 0 program helps fill the capital gap for earliest stage commercialization of promising science and research, readying new companies for future private investment. This program enables emerging companies to conduct R&D and prove technical and commercial viability of their innovations to prepare for production and marketing.

April 11 | Save the Date! Badass Women Entrepreneurs - Portland
Learn about resources. Feel inspired by shared stories. Be empowered by opportunities. Includes a panel discussion about securing follow-on funding, followed by a panel of rockstar women entrepreneurs fueling their startup ventures with fundraising, government grants, bootstrapping, and true grit. Also includes one-on-one meetings with VertueLab's SBIR/STTR grant expert, Leon Wolf.

March 11-13 | #BCTECHSummit
Western Canada’s largest annual innovation event, the #BCTECHSummit, showcases BC's vibrant technology industry, builds cross-sector and cross-border opportunities, and explores the latest ideas and innovations that are solving challenges and fueling the global economy. Learn more. Vancouver, BC (NOTE: VertueNEWS readers can use the code BCTECH19-INDUSTRY to get a $100 discount off registration price.)

Last year, the nation's best regional solar conference attracted more than 430 attendees representing 170 companies, and featured a range of exhibitors and sessions. Portland, OR

Request for Info. | Solar Energy Technologies Office
The U.S. Dept. of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office seeks feedback from industry, academia, research labs, government agencies, and others to identify challenges and opportunities for the American solar industry appropriate for federal government funding.

An opportunity for entrepreneurs seeking investment capital to present their early stage businesses to Willamette Valley Capital for capital investment.

RocketSpace and BP have teamed up on this accelerator to shape the future movement of people, goods, and services. Up to 21 startups are selected to participate.

If your product or service is “Made in America,” your company could qualify for this matching grant funding from the Northwest Trade Adjustment Assistance Center.

Up to $2M | Oregon Venture Fund
A group of investors contributes time, expertise, capital, and connections to help founders gain access to the right people and resources to grow their business their way.

Ongoing grants from a wide range of federal agencies that support small business startups and research innovations.
Stopping Climate Change Will Take All of Us
Your donation helps fund, support, and advance climate solutions

VertueLab helps the innovators and entrepreneurs developing critical climate solutions. Because climate disruption continues to accelerate, it's more critical than ever to ensure these solutions reach the marketplace and achieve scalable impact as soon as possible. Your donation makes a real difference in achieving a sustainable climate future, and we thank you for it. Contributions are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.
Let's Collaborate and Make an Impact!
Resources and expertise for innovators and investors

At VertueLab , we support great ideas from entrepreneurs and help donors and investors ensure that their dollars are making a positive impact on the planet by slowing the climate crisis. We collaborate to help transform ideas into successful enterprises and measure the impact all along the way. Contact us !