A slew of venture capital and private equity funds are raising money into clean-tech funds focused on Asia.
We had discussed earlier this year that most of the fund-raising in Renewable Energy and Cleantech in India is happening in mega project developments and developers.
Investors have also shown a lot of interest in this sector and the Indian cleantech sector has witnessed an investment of about $465 million from 2008.
Cleantech Group has earlier said that the biggest opportunities in Cleantech will be in emerging economies like India over the next decade.
According to reports, In his first ever investment overseas, Wipro’s billionaire chairman Azim Premji has invested around $15 million in Vinod Khosla’s clean-tech fund in the US, the biggest such fund focused on returns from Silicon Valley’s hottest start-ups.
With nearly $1.5 billion corpus, Premji Invest, the investment arm that manages the Wipro founder’s wealth, now plans to look beyond India for diversifying its portfolio and also tap into lucrative opportunities offered by new technology companies in the US.
“Risk appetites are higher in the valley, and so are returns if you are betting with somebody like Khosla,” said a Valley-based investor familiar with the development. “We are bound to see an increased interest from Indian investors in outbound opportunities,” he added.
Another person, aware of a non-disclosure agreement signed between Khosla Ventures and Premji Invest, said the transaction took place some four months ago.
Khosla’s green fund investments range from cellulosic ethanol firm Range Fuels and LS9 that designs microbes to produce biofuels.
In 2009, Khosla Ventures raised nearly $1.1 billion for two funds focussed on green technology and information technology start ups.
So far, he has invested in over 40 clean-tech companies including bio fuel projects such as KiOR and Amyris and Gevo.
Microsoft founder Bill Gates and several other big names from the technology world are backing Khosla’s green fund.