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Houston renewables co. acquired by PE, startup secures international win, and more top news

These are the news stories catching the eyes of readers so far in 2024. Photo via Getty Images

Editor's note: We're one week into 2024, and some of the first top headlines that resonated with EnergyCapital readers on social media and daily newsletter include a PE firm acquiring a local company, a new tech showcase for Baker Hughes, and more.

PE firm acquires Houston renewables fuels infrastructure company

Ara Partners announced this week that it has acquired a majority interest in Houston-based USD Clean Fuels. Image via Shutterstock.

Fresh off its $3 billion fund closure, a Houston private equity firm has made its latest acquisition.

Ara Partners announced this week that it has acquired a majority interest in Houston-based USD Clean Fuels, a developer of logistics infrastructure for renewable fuels. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

"We have high conviction that the green molecules economy – whether it's renewable fuel feedstocks or biofuels – offers disproportionate opportunity for returns and impact," George Yong, partner and co-head of Infrastructure at Ara Partners, says in a news release. Continue reading.

Houston-based startup secures million-dollar prize after global competition

Revterra was selected from among 10 finalists receiving up to $1 million piloting opportunities. Photo via ADNOC

A Houston sustainability startup has secured a major win on a global scale.

Revterra, which produces novel batteries made from recycled steel, has been awarded a million-dollar piloting opportunity by ADNOC following a global competition.

The ADNOC Decarbonization Technology Challenge, in collaboration with AWS, bp, Hub71, and the Net Zero Technology Centre, sought to find emerging climate tech innovations that are ready for scale. Continue reading.

Greentown Labs partners with VC firm on new emissions calculator integration

Greentown Labs has a new tool for evaluating potential members. Photo via Getty Images

If you want to be a member at either Boston-area or Houston location of Greentown Labs, you better have a small carbon footprint.

Leading global venture capital firm Clean Energy Ventures, which funds early-stage climate tech innovations, announced a partnership to offer access to the firm’s Simple Emissions Reduction Calculator (SERC) to Greentown Labs, the largest climate tech incubator in North America that is dually located in Houston and Sommerville, Massachusetts. New members will be required to report their CO2e emissions reduction potential as part of the incubator’s climate impact assessment as part of the Greentown Labs’ application process. Continue reading.

10 Houston energy companies recognized as best workplaces on annual list

Chevron — as well as nine other Houston energy companies — was named a top company by Newsweek. Photo via chevron.com

Newsweek recently recognized the country's top workplaces, and 10 Houston energy businesses made the cut.

The annual America's Greatest Workplaces 2023 list, which originally published in the fall, gave 10 Houston energy companies four stars or above. Continue reading.

Photos: Baker Hughes sets up interactive hub to showcase technology, sustainable energy solutions

The Baker Hughes Technology Showcase permanently displays the company's technology and clean energy solutions. Photo courtesy of Baker Hughes

When not traveling the world and being showcased internationally at various events and opportunities, the technology displays that Baker Hughes constructed to use as demonstrations and sales tools sat mostly in storage collecting dust until their next gig. That didn't sit well with Matt Hartman.

As sales and commercial enablement director, Hartman saw an opportunity for another use for these displays — one that would take them out of far-flung storage facilities.

"I wanted to reduce our storage and carbon footprint there, but I also wanted to make all of these items accessible at all times. And what better place to do it than one of the energy capitals of the world here in Houston," Hartman tells EnergyCapital. Continue reading.

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A View From HETI

Fervo Energy — and a few other Greentown Labs companies — made a global list of clean tech companies. Photo via fervoenergy.com

Nine Greentown Labs members were recognized on a global list honoring cleantech companies.

Houston-based Fervo Energy was named to Cleantech Group’s Global Cleantech 100 report. Cleantech Group is a research-driven company that aids the public sector, private sector, investors, and also identifies, assesses, and engages with the innovative solutions around climate challenges.

Fervo, a geothermal energy company that specializes in a renewable energy technology that uses hot water to produce electricity, debuted in 2022 on the list, and was honored in the “Energy & Power” category for the second straight year.

The other Greentown Labs, which is dual located in Houston and Somerville, Massachusetts, companies recognized on the list include:

  • Amogy, a New York-based novel carbon-free energy system using ammonia as a renewable fuel
  • Carbon Upcycling Technologies, a Canadian waste and carbon utilization company
  • Dandelion Energy, New York-based company offering ground source heat pumps for most homes
  • Energy Dome, a Milan-based company addressing the problem of long-duration energy storage
  • e-Zinc, a Canadian company with a breakthrough electrochemical technology for energy storage
  • Nth Cycle, a Massachusetts company with sustainable metal refining
  • Raptor Maps, a Massachusetts company with a software platform for solar assets' performance data management
  • Sublime Systems, a Massachusetts companydeveloping a breakthrough process for low-carbon cement
  • WeaveGrid, a California company working with utilities, automakers, EVSEs, and EV owners to enable and accelerate the electrification of transportation

The number of nominations from the public, a panel, i3, awards and Cleantech Group totaled 25,435 from over 65 countries, which is a 61% increase from the 2023 nomination process. Winners were chosen from a short list of 330 companies by a panel of over 80 industry experts.

While not on the list, Beaumont-based Fortress Energy was mentioned for its electrolyzer supply agreement with Cleantech Group 100 winner Electric Hydrogen.

The Cleantech Group 100 was started 15 years ago.

“In 15 more years, we will be at 2039—by which time, a mere decade out from the ‘net-zero’ target of 2050,” Cleantech Group CEO Richard Youngman says in the report. “I would expect the composition of our annual list to have markedly changed again, and the leading upcoming private companies of that time to reflect such.”

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