We take a look at the clean technology companies that have raised the most venture funding in the last few years. Overall, it is not light and pleasant reading.
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Most everyone knows the story of the “PayPal Mafia.” The term refers to how a network of founders and early employees of the online payment services company—people such as Peter Thiel, Max Levchin, Ken Howery, Luke Nosek, Roelof Botha, Elon Musk, Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, Jawed Karim and Reid Hoffman, among others—leveraged their connections to [...]
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(Reuters) – Clean technology venture firm The Westly Group has held a first close on $50 million toward a new $175 million fund, founder Steve Westly told Reuters in an exclusive interview. The Menlo Park, Calif.-based firm, which hit it big with Tesla Motors and Amyris stakes, plans to continue investments in a range of [...]
(Reuters) – The recession and high gasoline prices offer the U.S. automotive industry a chance to reinvent itself as consumers inch toward acceptance of alternatives to the internal combustion engine, a top venture capitalist said on Tuesday. “This recession is a great reminder that the industry is changing,” Ray Lane, a managing partner at storied [...]
The Department of Energy plans another big year of guaranteeing loans for renewable energy projects. In the past 14 months, the DOE’s largest loan guarantee program (called Section 1705) awarded almost $26 billion to 23 renewable energy projects being run by companies such as BrightSource Energy and Abound Solar. The program has the financial assets [...]
Second quarter has emerged as the best time period for venture-backed IPOs since late 2007. There were 17 venture-backed IPOs in second quarter, raising $1.3 billion. This is up significantly from the 5 IPOs that launched last year, also during second quarter, that had a deal value of $720.7 million, according to data from Thomson Reuters/National Venture Capital Association. The [...]
My weekly Reuters Insider spot this week is about Tesla Motors, which closed its first day of trading up over 40% to $23.94 per share (it was only at around $18 per share when we filmed).
Only regret on below video is that I didn’t bring up A123 Systems when asked about Tesla’s battery building plans. That company also had a $2 billion+ market cap post-IPO (and plenty of gov’t backing), but has since tumbled more than 50 percent. Anyway, happy viewing:
If I were a venture capitalist today, I’d just be shaking my head at the Tesla Motors IPO. No profits, declining quarter-over-quarter revenue, a bankrupt founder/CEO, proven manufacturing difficulties and all hopes resting on a $50k sedan that won’t begin production until 2012.
“Don’t we have unsuccessful companies like that in our portfolio,” I’d ask. “We even have some government loans for our cleantech companies. Is all we’re missing a better marketing department?”
I might also wonder why Elon Musk is doing television interviews about the company, whereas other CEOs clam up due to post-IPO “quiet periods.”
But not everyone agrees with me, as evidenced by the fact that Tesla is trading above its IPO price despite a dismal day on the broader market. Reader Jim sent over the following thoughts via email: