John Kerry joins TPG’s Rise Fund as adviser with renewable energy focus

  • Kerry to focus on renewable energy opportunities
  • Rise Fund has two energy-related investments
  • Numerous pension funds have invested in the Fund

TPG’s impact-investing group hired former Secretary of State John Kerry as senior adviser for its renewable-energy portfolio.

Kerry will “help develop and advance broad strategy goals, work with portfolio companies, and help develop investment opportunities,” Rise Fund said in a news release.

To date, Rise Fund has invested in two energy-related companies. One is C3IoT, an artificial-intelligence company with products that help energy firms reduce equipment failures and fraud and improve their processes.

C3IoT has reduced about 1.85 million tons of carbon based on savings for utility customers, Bill McGlashan, founder and CEO of Rise Fund, told ImpactAlpha in April. McGlashan is also the founder of TPG Growth.

Another Rise Fund portfolio company is Brava, which is developing an energy-efficient smart oven.

TPG Growth has invested in five of Rise Fund’s portfolio companies. “Indicative that these companies have shown growth in addition to quantifiable impact,” a source with knowledge of the situation said.

The $2 billion Rise Fund was co-founded by McGlashan, musician-turned-investor Bono and Jeff Skoll. TPG’s founders, David Bonderman and Jim Coulter, are also on the board.

Another executive with Rise Fund is Rick Needham, who leads energy-sector investing for the group. Earlier, Needham was director of energy and sustainability at Google for eight years, his LinkedIn profile shows.

Rise Fund has investments from U.S. pension funds including New Jersey’s state pension system, Washington State Investment Board and the Regents of the University of California.

Renewables like solar and wind, which currently account for 4 percent of global power generation, could reshape markets by generating as much as 36 percent of global power by 2035, a 2017 McKinsey report says.

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