FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Christopher Buck, Esq.
Air Power Analytics, Inc.
Green Launching Pad Companies Leverage Social Media to Keep Momentum Going
Newly funded Green Launching Pad companies are looking to cooperate to build clean-tech industry in New Hampshire.
Durham, NH, August 26, 2010 – On May 1, five Green Launching Pad finalists were informed that their companies were receiving funding. Today, those finalists and the sixty-seven other applicants are banding together to share in a common vision for the future of New Hampshire’s green-tech industry.
The Green Launching Pad is a business plan competition for New Hampshire green-tech companies, conceived by UNH President Mark Huddleston, UNH Professor Ross Gittell, and Governor John Lynch. It awards Department of Energy funds to stimulate growth for early-stage green-tech companies in New Hampshire, and to provide a path for local employment.
Just over a fiscal quarter after receiving funding, the participants are finding that cooperation may be the best strategy for industry growth.
“We have so many resources at our disposal,” says attorney Chris Buck, Marketing Analyst for Green Launching Pad finalist Air Power Analytics of Bedford, NH. “There is the institutional support of UNH, which includes business mentorship from companies across New Hampshire, as well as networking opportunities with key players in our industry. But we also have our common experiences to draw from, which may be our best asset. As a collection of bootstrapped companies, social networking is driving that collaboration.”
This past Thursday, the five finalist companies were privileged to meet with Governor John Lynch, a UNH alum and Harvard Business School graduate, who asked the companies about what they needed from the public sector to succeed. Several of the companies responded that they would like to see meetings with the utilities to prove out their technologies. The companies address a variety of needs from reducing energy in heavy manufacturing to monitoring gas tanks to financing large solar arrays. The company presidents were confident that they could win the support of the utilities and Public Utilities Commission (PUC), if they could have more opportunities to demonstrate their energy-saving products and services.
The companies also enjoyed a presentation from Gregg Fairbrothers, Professor at the Tuck School at Dartmouth. Fairbrothers stressed the importance of knowing the target customer, and demonstrating that knowledge in a simple, concise, and well-polished business plan.
After the meeting with the five finalists, all seventy-one applicants were treated to lunch with the Governor and UNH President Huddleston at the Durham campus’ Holloway Commons. Emotions ran high at one point when several of the participants expressed feelings of frustration and uncertainty, saying that they had invested substantial personal savings in their technologies, and that they were unsure how they were going to make ends meet without greater assistance and visibility from the Green Launching Pad.
While every business expressed frustration about raising capital in the current economic climate, there were two other prominent needs that were conveyed to the Governor – a lack of internal networking, so that companies might develop synergistic relationships with each other, and a lack of media coverage. To address the latter concern, the Governor suggested that an interactive website and blog could be built to provide a more public face for the accomplishments of the green-tech companies. It was acknowledged that a success for one company is really a success for all of the Green Launching Pad participants, and that what all the companies aspire to build is really a green-tech industry in New Hampshire, in addition to promoting their own products and services. Professors Ross Gittell and Venky Venkatachalam agreed with the proposal and are working on solutions for the site.
Another positive development to come out of the meeting is that the several companies are now collaborating with each other via a Linkedin group. “This will provide networking opportunities with each other and chances to develop relationships with other companies that would not have been possible without the Green Launching Pad,” says Ed Mitchell, founder of Air Power Analytics. “In the end, we want everyone to succeed. We feel a great responsibility to the other companies and the people of New Hampshire to create jobs, save energy costs, and help the environment wherever we can.”
With a common vision beginning to form among the participants, the Green Launching Pad companies appear to have a bright future ahead.
Christopher Buck, Esq. is a New Hampshire attorney and Marketing Analyst for Air Power Analytics of Bedford, New Hampshire. He is also the founder of Docketz.com, a local legal research website in New Hampshire.
Disclosure: "No positions"