SaaS to PaaS and Beyond: Interviewing Uptake on the Evolution of Software Services in the Power Sector


Ken-Ichi Hino
I recently had the opportunity to speak with Sonny Garg, who leads the energy unit at Uptake, an industrials-focused predictive analytics company launched by Groupon co-founders, Brad Keywell and Eric Lefkofsky. Uptake’s platform serves a broad range of markets – rail, aviation, mining, energy, construction, agriculture and retail, among others – and recently announced a deal with Berkshire Hathaway Energy for the application of Uptake’s predictive analytics to wind plants at two BHE subsidiaries. I spoke with Garg about both... Read More »

Flying cars are arriving along two very different tracks


Ken-Ichi Hino
Monday (February 13) was a big day in the world of personal aerial transportation, with two major announcements: The United Arab Emirates’ Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) announced that Chinese UAV company EHang will begin providing autonomous aerial transportation in Dubai this summer. Dutch company PAL-V announced that its Liberty, the world’s first commercial flying car, is now on sale, with first deliveries expected by the end of 2018. While both announcements have captured imaginations by featuring “flying car” taglines,... Read More »

It Takes a Village: Creating the energy-optimized smart home


Ken-Ichi Hino
In a previous blog post on home energy management, CTG covered new devices being introduced by Google, Amazon, and Apple. Since then, Amazon announced that it had sold “millions” of Alexa devices in 2016, and that the Echo family of products had seen a 9x increase in sales this holiday season over last. Google has not made any announcements regarding sales, but has just announced new partnerships for Google Home, including Hyundai for connected car services and Sony for high-end... Read More »

Electrochromic technologies: The quiet revolution underway


Ken-Ichi Hino
Windows are a large energy efficiency opportunity, with the US Department of Energy estimating that retrofitting single pane windows alone could save $12 billion annually. While traditional energy efficiency options include insulation and double-paned glass, advancements in electrochromic (EC) technology may accelerate improvements in window energy efficiency. EC technology changes the tint of transparent surfaces by applying voltage, which enables modulation of the light coming through the surface. Photochromic and thermochromic windows are related solutions – as the names imply,... Read More »

At the Intersection of Mobility Trends


Ken-Ichi Hino
The transportation sector is in the midst of a massive shift, driven primarily by innovation in three areas: autonomous driving, vehicle electrification, and car sharing. We appear to be heading toward a future combining all three, and are already seeing pieces today: Uber clearly has the ride sharing/hailing platform, and has rolled out an autonomous vehicle program in Pittsburgh. The vehicles are Volvo XC90s, which are hybrids rather than full electric vehicles. Tesla clearly has the electric car, and has... Read More »

Highlights of our Investment Summit: Trends & Opportunities in Energy’s Emerging Future


Ken-Ichi Hino
On October 20th, Cleantech Group and Enovation Partners, in collaboration with our sponsor Stifel, convened an invitation-only executive summit in New York City focused on the emerging investment opportunity sets and trends in energy for 2017 and beyond. The discussion-focused event helped facilitate a day of shared viewpoints from the attendees, which included investors, corporates, utilities, innovators, and other stakeholders in energy. The morning sessions elicited perspectives on the investment opportunities and challenges, and how those differ across capital classes... Read More »

Charging Ahead in Energy Storage


Ken-Ichi Hino
Batteries have captured many recent positive headlines for electric vehicle (EV) and stationary grid storage applications. From grid storage costs projected to fall 50 percent over the next 5 years, to the grid market growing nearly 10x over the same period, to new EV models from Tesla and GM, there are many reasons to be optimistic about the prospects for batteries. At the same time, however, batteries have experienced highly negative media coverage for more established consumer applications. Samsung’s Galaxy... Read More »