Venture-focused limited partners have stayed away from the clean energy space in the last couple of years.
But Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital is aiming to change their minds.
The Vancouver-based energy investor is hoping to scale up for its fourth fund, telling peHUB affiliate publication VCJ that it is eyeing a fund size of $150 million to $250 million. Chrysalix raised its last fund, a $123 million vehicle, in 2008.
“We believe we will see investors come back to this [clean energy] industry,” Wal van Lierop, the firm’s co-founder and CEO, said of the clean energy sector.
A leading indicator, he said, is the high level of interest large industrial companies are showing in so-called sustainable innovation. Companies in mining, oil extraction and other energy-intensive sectors are actively seeking technologies to improve performance while reducing fuel and power consumption.
These days, van Lierop said, Chrysalix is building its strategy largely around solving energy problems laid out by large industrials, many of whom are also investors. Backers listed on its website include Shell, fuel cell developer Ballard, chemicals giant BASF, and oil and gas and chemicals producer Total. Large industrials are also increasingly signing on strategic investors in portfolio companies.
One example of a portfolio company aligned with this industrials-focused strategy is GlassPoint, a developer of solar steam generators used in oil extraction. The Fremont, Calif.-based company has raised $57 million to date from investors including Chrysalix, Nth Power, Rockport Capital Partners and Shell, according to Thomson Reuters.
Photo of Wal van Lierop courtesy of Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital.