Entrepreneurs, start-ups, and others with ideas for smart grid technology are getting an open invitation from GE to ask for funding. GE along with VC firms that include Emerald Technology Ventures, Foundation Capital, Cleiner Perkings Caufield & Byer, and RockPort Capital say they are looking to fund ideas in renewables, the grid, and in eco homes and buildings. Select entrants in the effort will be offered the opportunity to develop a commercial relations with GE through investment, validation of the business plan, distribution, a sharing of GE development resources, and using GE resources to take products to market.
GE says it will make a $200 million commitment to help bring new ideas to market by providing businesses and individuals with an opportunity to secure growth capital through GE investment and/or investment by participating venture capital firms.
Over the course of ten weeks, entrants will be able to submit ideas via ecomagination.com. Entries will be evaluated as candidates for both a potential future commercial relationship as well as a $100,000 innovation challenge award acknowledging the entry as an example of outstanding entrepreneurship and innovation.
A committee of representatives from GE, VC firms, and leading academics and technologists will pass judgment on ideas submitted. Five lucky participants will get $100,000 innovation challenge awards. The general public will also be able to review and comment on entries, presumably through the Web site.
Those with promising ideas can check out the complete list of details at http://ge.ecomagination.com/index.html