1. What is ecomagination?
Launched in 2005, ecomagination is GE’s global commitment to build innovative clean energy technologies. Now in its fifth year, ecomagination is doubling down and opening up through investment and collaboration to accelerate a new era of energy innovation. The company will invest $10 billion in ecomagination R&D over the next five years and double operational energy efficiency while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and water consumption.
2. What is the ecomagination Challenge: Powering the Grid?
GE is partnering with leading VC firms, Emerald Technology Ventures, Foundation Capital, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byer, and RockPort Capital, to launch the “GE ecomagination Challenge: Powering the Grid”, a $200 million financial commitment to accelerate innovation by working with businesses, entrepreneurs, innovators and others to build the next-generation power grid. The challenge invites people to come together to take on one of the world’s toughest challenges—building the next-generation power grid to meet the needs of the 21st century.
Further information is available online at www.ecomagination.com/challenge, where ideas can also be submitted.
The challenge covers three areas where the world needs new ideas: Creating Power – Developing renewable energy technologies or components of technologies, generating more renewable energy centrally or distributed across the grid, improving the efficiency of power generation, etc. Connecting to Power – Improving the efficiency of power transmission, reliably connecting intermittently available renewable power to the grid, connecting areas of renewable energy supply to areas of demand (population centers), quickly identifying service disruptions, etc. Using Power – Developing products that use energy more efficiently, leveraging technology (including social media) to change behavior, smoothing out demand, etc.
Challenge entrants will be offered the opportunity to develop a commercial relationship with GE and its VC partners. Within this unique partnership, GE will provide all the elements of the commercial relationship (listed below), which could also comprise an equity investment, while the VCs will focus exclusively on strategic investments. Investment: the $200 million capital pledge of GE and its partners will be invested globally into promising start-ups and ideas Validation: evaluation of entrant’s business strategy through in-depth discussions with GE‘s and its partners’ technical and commercial teams Distribution: exploration of partnership opportunities with GE to scale a business and create global reach Development: leveraging of GE‘s technical infrastructure and GE Global Research Centers to accelerate technology and product development Growth: exploration of opportunities for utilizing existing GE customer relationships for a go-to-market strategy
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