The California green business competition, the California Clean Tech Open, which has churned out a series of quality cleantech startups over the past two years, announced its winners for 2008 on Thursday night. The 6 winners include sustainable diapers startup Over the Moon Diapers, electric car conversion startup ElectraDrive, green building company BottleStone, green data center startup Power Assure, energy efficient air conditioner company Viridis Earth, and solar hot water heater company Focal Point Energy. The winners were chosen out of 43 finalists, and 100 submissions, and will receive the equivalent of $100,000 in both cash and business services in a ‘startup-in-a-box prize.’
The winners were announced at the awards ceremony in San Francisco, at an event where the Mayor of San Jose Chuck Reed, Foundation Capital Principal Steve Vassallo and the Deputy Assistant Secretary, U.S. Department of Energy, David Rodgers, all gave speeches on their view of where the cleantech industry is headed in these financially challenging times.
We’ll profile these startups more in depth in the coming weeks, but we wanted to give you the heads up on the winners. All the award recipients gave charmingly stunned and excited acceptance speeches at the event, and it was interesting to see their unbridled enthusiasm compared to the alumni winners and previous finalists with a year or two of startup life under their belt. Most of the winners and finalists this year are looking for funding to get their business plan and idea off the ground and into production. This isn’t the best time to be an early stage cleantech company looking to raise a first round of funding, but being able to say your company is a California Clean Tech Open finalist or winner, will definitely help.