Although the summer was packed with business development efforts associated with the Cleantech Open, over in the Rebound labs we did indeed find time to get some tech development done! I thought it would be a great time to give an update and share some results.
I’m confident in our technologies, I’m confident in our team, and I’m confident in our work ethic. What I haven’t been all that confident in is the US Government’s technology funding decisions. After all, their lack of interest in supporting IcePoint technology while they pump millions into battery research has been frustrating. Well, Russell and I have renewed faith in the system and are happy to report that Rebound’s innovations are starting to get some attention. The first indicator is in the form of a $1.375M grant via the Powering Agriculture Grand Challenge.
It's a bit ironic that I’m writing this blog instead of Russell. After all, it was Russell that powered through the Cleantech Open, attending all the obligatory regional events while I was in Chile. He stepped up and became the face of Rebound while I spent my time down south listening to webinars, completing worksheets and refining financial models. It was a time-consuming, but valuable experience that unfortunately didn’t get us to the CTO finals, but did leave us with a much stronger idea of the challenges ahead.
It's been a very busy summer at Rebound from a business/publicity perspective. Event participation has really helped us A) get our message out and B) learn how we can better our company, technology and development strategy. We wanted to take a moment to highlight some of these events and lessons learned while thanking those organizations for including us.
Since 1987 the Montreal Protocol (MP) has successfully worked to phase out and eliminate Ozone Depleting Compounds (ODC’s) such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), and halons. Unfortunately, what might be one of the most important international environmental agreements fails to address the production and use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), chemicals that don’t deplete the ozone, but are up to 3000 times more hazardous to the climate system than CO2. For the past four years the US, Canada and Mexico have been working to draft policy that would address these HFC’s with high Global Warming Potential (GWP).
I’m now a proud member of R744.com, and yes, my parents are proud. For those out there wondering what R-744 is, but to lazy to investigate, let me tell you: its the label designated to carbon dioxide when used as a refrigerant. Still confused and/or interested? Here is a quick pdf summary by Westway Services to help you out.
We are passionate about energy storage, but think our country’s current development approach is too slow and the resulting innovations too costly. The content below discusses this path and suggests a solution already pursued by REbound and other companies.
Is having a versatile technology a blessing or a curse? Prior to embarking on this entrepreneurial path I would have considered that question a joke. After all, what could be the downside to developing a technology with multiple applications? Well, as it turns out, every investor under the sun, whether the government or private, requires a solid go-to-market plan before they’re willing to shell out the funds. It also turns out that selecting the correct entry market is no easy feat. In fact, the advice Venrock Capital Partners gave me a few months back was dead on. The technology won’t be your challenge. Finding the right market will be.
Last week the Rebound team was fortunate to attend the NREL Industry Growth Forum in Denver. We had an opportunity to network with corporations, investors and fellow entrepreneurs who, in one way or another, will all contribute to our company’s development and success. We were grateful to be there and look forward to perhaps presenting in 2013. Just like any pitch event, it exposed a previously witnessed disconnect between investor and technology, an issue we believe contributes to cleantech’s underperformance.
It’s hard to believe, but summer is coming to an end. If our lack of blogging shows anything, it’s that it was a busy period for REbound. And while development efforts are only escalating here in Boulder, the team wanted to take a quick break to share some lab experiences. That’s right, REbound started testing this summer!