Cleantech Open Announces PNW Finalists to Compete for National $250,000 Prize

The Pacific Northwest Cleantech Open – a chapter of the world’s largest business competition devoted to finding, funding, and fostering successful cleantech businesses – today announced the three finalists to represent the Northwest at the national competition for a chance to win $250,000. The winning companies – Indow Windows, HM3 Energy, and GridMobility – were selected from a class of eleven semifinalists which represent some of the most innovative, local start-up companies addressing the critical energy, environment, and economic challenges we face today.

“From innovations in green building to energy efficiency, this year’s class of semifinalists exemplifies the high-quality and caliber of entrepreneurship growing in the Northwest,” said Byron McCann, Cleantech Open regional director for the Pacific Northwest. “This year’s winners will proudly represent our region at the national competition, and we wish them luck.”

The Pacific Northwest 2011 competition finalists are:

  • GridMobility (Redmond, WA) is a smart grid company that enables utilities, power balancing authorities, commercial and residential power customers to significantly increase their consumption of renewable energy and reduce energy costs. Using proprietary technology, GridMobility allows customers to choose their electricity sources and actively manage power consumption.  GridMobility is a WCTA member.
  • Indow Windows (Portland, OR)  builds thermal inserts that press on the inside of a window frame without any nails, screws or adhesives to deliver the performance of double pane windows, at a fraction of the price. With 43 percent of U.S. residences using single pane windows, Indow Window delivers a cost-effective, energy-saving alternative.
  • HM3 Energy (Troutdale, OR) uses proprietary technology to convert biomass into clean fuel to replace coal in coal-fired power plants. Existing power plants can co-fire biomass with coal, or directly use torrefied biomass in place of coal, without any plant modifications and at nearly the cost.

“The Cleantech Open provides access to mentorship, business, and financial expertise to help start-ups transform bright, new ideas into successful, profitable companies,” McCann added. “The Northwest has long been an incubator for innovation and there’s an opportunity to add to that legacy by building a strong, regional clean technology industry.”

In just three years, the all-volunteer organization can already point to measurable successes in the Northwest. Last year’s regional finalist, Puralytics, an Oregon-based company pioneering photochemical water purification, won the national championship for the tremendous environmental and social impact of their technology.

The three Pacific Northwest winners will compete with finalists from six other Cleantech Open regions on November 16 at the national awards ceremony in San Jose, CA.

Cleantech Open Sponsors

The Cleantech Open is made possible by the generous support provided by Global Partner: Chevron; National Sponsor: Autodesk and the University of Phoenix; Multi-Regional Sponsor: Wells Fargo and Deloitte. Event sponsors include: Puget Sound Energy, Avista, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati, Lane Powell, Silicon Valley Bank, Stoel Rives, Dorsey & Whitney, and Portland General Electric. Mentor support provided by Aeon Law.

About the Cleantech Open

The Cleantech Open is the world’s largest cleantech business competition. Its mission is to find, fund and foster entrepreneurs with big ideas that address today’s most urgent energy, environmental, and economic challenges. The program provides the infrastructure, expertise, and strategic relationships to turn clever ideas into successful global cleantech companies. Since 2006, through its one-of-a-kind annual business competition and mentorship program, the Cleantech Open has enabled hundreds of clean technology startups to bring their breakthrough ideas to fruition, helped alumni contestants raise over $280 million, and created an estimated 1,200 green collar jobs. Fueled by a network of more than 700 volunteers and sponsors, the Cleantech Open unites the public and private sectors in a shared vision for making America’s cleantech sector a thriving economic engine.