Twelve hand-picked New South Wales environmental companies took part in a joint ANZA TechNet/New South Wales Department of State & Regional Development pilot video conference yesterday, linking the companies in Sydney with three environmental experts in Silicon Valley.
The 90-minute video conference was made possible through an in-kind sponsorship with Cisco’s Public TelePresence Suites. Following opening remarks by ANZA CEO Viki Forrest, who was in Sydney for this inaugural event, the Silicon Valley experts in clean energy and storage (Peter Bryant, TransTech USA), green building and infrastructure (Ted van der Linden, DPR Construction, Inc.) and water supply, purification and waste water treatment (Steve Line, ICOMMM, Inc.) gave short presentations on market landscape, competitive environment and funding and partnering opportunities.
Key areas covered included:
- Why — in spite of the economy — it is still a good time to do business in the clean/green market space (“Think of what’s happening in the US right now as a ‘dot.energy’ boom” — Peter Bryant)
- Regional and regulatory complexities in the US market in the clean/green space
- Capital flow from the 2009 economic stimulus plan (“A perfect storm for green tech — the consumer demand is there and we now have a government that supports it” — Ted van der Linden)
- What VCs and angel investors are looking for in a business plan and the current state of funding (all experts agreed that funding should pick up in “the next 12 to 18 months”)
- Partnering opportunities
- Market entry (“It helps if you have some proven metrics — show potential investors and partners how they can measure the savings or improvements your technology will make” — Steve Line)
- The role of marketing in the US vs. Australia
The presentations were followed by a Q&A session, with each company having the opportunity to ask the experts for further information. As part of this program, the companies also have access to the experts for one-on-one guidance for a period of one week.
The video conference is part of a larger NSW US market exploratory program with ANZA TechNet that provides in-depth US market research into various innovative tech sectors, provides US expert opinion on each sector and allows for participating companies to have one week of expert input on their company’s technology and market strategy beyond Australia.