The firm, formerly known as Paladin Private Equity Partners, started raising its fund in 2006 and secured an initial investment from the CalPERS’ Environmental Technology Program, an initiative the pension fund initiated to support cleantech investing.
Craton backs companies working on alternatives to carbon-intensive technologies currently in use, including green building materials, renewable energy generation and alternative fuels. The firm is also looking to back companies working in water and waste management.
It has invested in two startups so far from the new fund. It backed geothermal energy systems installation company
The firm is run by Robert MacDonald, a former co-founder of independent clean energy company Catalyst Energy; Tom Soto, a former president of the Coalition for Clean Air non-profit; Michael Lenard, a former partner with Latham & Watkins; and John Gerson, a former CFO at William E. Simon and Sons Private Equity Partners.
Craton claims, on its website, to be a “triple bottom line” investment firm looking to achieve above market returns, environmental improvement and create jobs and wealth for “diverse communities.” —Alexander Haislip
Hunt Ventures tracks down $140M
The VC firm did not disclose LPs, but it announced that a significant capital commitment came from an unaffiliated institutional investor.
“We are pleased that our strategy of investing in early stage information technology companies has been validated by a sophisticated institutional investor,” said Steve Coffey, managing director, in a prepared release.
Hunt Ventures focuses on early stage wireless, digital media, software and services companies. The early stage firm will use some of the new capital to support existing portfolio companies, and the rest to make new investments.
Charter raises one-third of $150M target
Element seeks $400M for fund II
Avrio grows first fund to $75M
The firm focuses on investments in food technology, nutraceuticals and industrial bioproducts. Avrio, which also has offices in Toronto and Montreal, plans to invest in between 12 and 14 companies over the next several years. To date, the firm has made three investments from its new fund, including Siamons International Inc., a natural antimicrobial product maker; Origin BioMed Inc., topical nerve-related pain treatment developer; and S.J. Irvine, a maker of gluten-free specialty processed foods.
Avrio Ventures, currently with six investors on staff, may add one to two new members to its team for this fund, according to Partner Aki Georgacacos.
French firm closes life sciences fund
Ascent eyes fifth fund
The ealry stage firm invests in software and networking companies.
GE Venture arm geared up for biofuels
Angel said he has spent the past few months focusing his attention on cellulosic ethanol and other next-generation biofuels.
He said he expects to spend the next several months studying the transportation sector. The venture arm, part of GE Energy Financial Services, has an annual budget of between $50 million and $100 million. It has so far made only two investments in 2008, Angel said. Equity deals typically range between $5 million and $20 million.