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Global Cleantech Industry Growing Despite Challenging Conditions

Global advisory services leader EY have released a new report which indicates that despite challenging market conditions, cleantech companies are finding their feet again, with the number of cleantech companies globally growing, despite bankruptcies and consolidation.

“We’ve seen a notable upturn in the performance of the 424 public pure-play cleantech companies globally,” said Gil Forer, EY’s Global Cleantech Leader. “Despite a challenging period of consolidation in certain cleantech segments, fiscal issues in some countries and the continuing impact of the financial crisis; we’ve seen an annual gain of 18% in market capitalization (US$170b), and 12% increase in headcount (512,500). Growth in the Asia-Pacific region was a major factor in these increases.”

The public pure-play companies — companies publicly traded — are drawn from the Bloomberg New Energy Finance database and limited to those companies deriving 50% to 100% of their total value from clean energy as of April of this year (excluding public investment funds and acquisition vehicles, and those companies participating in carbon market activities).

Unsurprisingly, given recent trends in the region, the Asia-Pacific region stood out as the leading market, increasing the number of PPP companies by 16% to 177. Globally, the cleantech sector saw the creation of 68 new PPP companies and the loss of 63 during 2012, with Europe, the Middle East, and Africa contracting by 8% to only 135 companies.

Specifically, the US and China remain at the front with 70 and 64 PPP companies respectively.

The cleantech industry is also providing a growing number of jobs, up 12% from 2012 to 512,500. Over half this headcount can be found in China, who was the primary driver for this growth, adding huge numbers to their solar and wind industry.

Forer concludes: “The cleantech sector globally has shifted to growth. Resource scarcity, energy security concerns, population growth and increasing consumption, by expanding middle classes in emerging markets, will continue to drive this cleantech market growth. China is consolidating its position as the most important cleantech market and is poised to overtake the US as the number one center for public cleantech companies.”

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