Pump manufacturer Grundfos to provide expertise for Cleantech Open

Pump manufacturer Grundfos will play a key role in this year's Cleantech Open, the world's largest clean-technology business competition. Grundfos plans to provide expertise and possibly capital to the Cleantech Open participants.

"This cooperation gives us a unique opportunity to identify new business and expand our network," said Henrik Skoy Laursen, head of Grundfos Water Technology Center in Fresno, Calif. "It allows us to have dialogue and partner up with cutting edge companies at a very early stage."

The pump manufacturer's executives will act at experts, mentor and judges to the Cleantech participants, according to a company news release. A non-profit organization, the Cleantech Open helps connect entrepreneurs with the expertise, talent, and funding needed to create successful, sustainable businesses. Cleantech Open alumni have raised more than $300 million in capital while creating thousands of clean-technology jobs.

By committing its resources, Grundfos aims to forge connections between startup companies, NGOs, academia and venture capitalists that will lead to innovative solutions for improving water availability and reducing energy use.

Laursen is part of a panel on Thursday titled "Closing the Cleantech Adoption Gap." Grundfos is also involved with the Blue Tech Valley initiative, which aims to leverage the Central San Joaquin Valley's natural resources and assets for inventors, entrepreneurs and start-ups in hopes of creating an environment conducive to testing, developing, and commercializing new water and energy technology.

"We believe that startups don't necessarily fail due to the lack of a good idea, or even funding," said Rex Northen, executive director of the Cleantech Open. "More often than not, entrepreneurs can lack the business expertise and relationships necessary to transition successfully from an innovative idea to a thriving business. This partnership with Grundfos will help deliver the expertise and connections needed to execute and achieve water-technology innovations — and success at scale."

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