Cleantech Group Celebrates Stand Out Achievements in Europe of the past 12 Months


HELSINKI, FINLAND – May 18, 2017 – Last night, Cleantech Group (CTG), marked certain standout achievements of the last 12 months in its innovation ecosystem, during the gala dinner of its 13th annual Cleantech Forum Europe, held in Helsinki, Finland for the first time. (Helsinki is the 12th different European city to host a Cleantech Forum Europe.)

The awards made were part of an award series CTG has been running since 2002, to mark and celebrate key achievements from companies, investors, and individuals.

On this occasion, the following awards were made in the following order:

  • Standout Fundraising Achievement of the Year (Company) – Skeleton Technologies
  • Standout Fundraising Achievement of the Year (Investor) – Emerald Technology Ventures
  • European Deal of the Year – Punch Powertrain (Acquisition by Yinyi Group)
  • European Cleantech Corporation of the Year – ENGIE

Please note that the year referenced is April 1-March 31, as CTG announces these awards at its annual Cleantech Forum Europe in the spring.

Two Standout Fundraising Achievement of the Year awards were made:

Standout Fundraising Achievement of the Year awards can be awarded to one (or more) “company, or an investor, active in clean technology in the Europe & Israel region whose fundraising achievement in the past 12 months (in this case, March 2016 – March 2017) stands out to the Cleantech Group’s analysts for any combination of its audacity or its novelty, its impressive execution or the quality of its syndicate, or its pioneering and example-setting nature.

They were made to:

  • Company: Skeleton Technologies, a developer and manufacturer of graphene ultracapacitor-based energy storage. In the prior 12 months, Skeleton raised a total of €28m from a combination of a new financing round of €13m led by a new lead venture capital investor from the Asia-Pacific – testament to a European company that has the potential to have global impact – and €15m of “quasi-equity” from the EIB under the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) program.
  • Investor: Emerald Technology Ventures (ETV), a pioneer and leader in industrial technology investments since 2000. The award recognized the innovativeness of its new Emerald Industrial Innovation Fund LP (EIIF), which is structured to combine the benefits of an traditional venture capital fund with the flexibility of an evergreen structure. Investors can join on a rolling basis. To date, €40m has been raised under this new structure from 5 Limited Partners, since its launch one year ago.

Our European Deal of the Year award exists to recognize “stand-out deals, considering not only for their financial characteristics, but also for the wider impact and what the deal says for the future of deal-making for clean technology companies and investors, and for the direction and future of sustainable innovation.

The European Deal of the Year was awarded to Punch Powertrain, the Belgian company acquired by China’s Yinyi Group in August 2016 for approximately €1bn. With its high IRR and return on capital invested, it was the standout candidate for the 2017 award.

The European Cleantech Corporation of the Year award exists to recognize “a major European enterprise whose activities, actions and consistent support over multiple years have significantly contributed to the growth of cleantech innovation, and/or demand for cleaner products and services, and who has made some particularly noteworthy actions over the last 12 months.”

The 2017 European Cleantech Corporation of the Year was awarded to ENGIE, the France-based global energy player and provider of electricity, natural gas and energy services. The following reasons are why ENGIE stood out to CTG for this award:

  1. The determination and seriousness with which ENGIE has gripped the challenges of the huge and disruptive transitions ongoing in the world of energy, and the speed with which it has been responding. This has been growing over the last few years, with the cessation of activities in oil generation and coal-fired electricity generation, but the momentum has noticeably increased in the last 12 months.
  2. The diversity of actions being undertaken. A true portfolio approach is evident, covering many different angles on the “future of energy” – from Distributed Energy to Mobility, from Energy Efficiency to Energy Storage, from Hydrogen to Solar, from individual buildings to Cities of Tomorrow – and using many different strategies and techniques to help get ready for the future. A few examples:
  3. The set-up of the Innovation, Marketing and New Business group, going back about 3 years. From a standing start in 2014, ENGIE New Ventures emerged as one of the most active corporate venture groups, investing in leading start-ups in both the US and Europe.
  4. The announcement that €1.5 billion will be devoted to ENGIE Digital and the company’s digital transformation over 2016-2019, a recognition that digital innovations are increasingly unleashing disruptive forces across the energy world.
  5. The set-up of the open innovation effort, ENGIE Fab, with the mission to build billion dollar businesses of the future.
  6. The very high level of activities in the last 12 months, as referenced in the prior point but underlined by the recent acquisition of EV-Box, a global leader in the production of EV charging stations, itself following on from acquisitions such as SIRADEL, the 3D modeler of cities, and others such as Ecova, Green Charge Networks, and Solairedirect, the latter two companies being alumni of CTG’s annual Global Cleantech 100 program.

About Cleantech Group (CTG)

Founded in 2002, the mission of Cleantech Group (CTG) is to accelerate sustainable innovation. Our subscriptions, events and programs are all designed to help corporates, investors, and all players in the innovation ecosystem discover and connect with the key companies, trends, and people in the market. Our coverage is global, spans the entire clean technology theme and is relevant to the future of all industries. The company is headquartered in San Francisco, with a growing international presence in London.

Our parent company, Enovation Partners, one of Consulting Magazine‘s 7 to Watch, is based in Chicago (learn more at