The deal between BP Plc and Clipper Windpower Plc to co-develop five wind farms in the United States totalling more than 2,000 megawatts could be good news for Canada’s Xantrex Technology. Clipper has traditionally been a loyal buyer of Xantrex’s wind inverter technology and MacMurray Whale, an analyst at Sprott Securities, believes the BP-Clipper deal is likely to translate into large orders for Xantrex, which seems to have turned itself around in the last quarter on the strength of orders from the solar market. Whale believes such an order would be material for Xantrex’s financials. The company releases its second quarter results this Tuesday, so perhaps we’ll get more insight on the impact of the deal and other developments.
Interesting weekend read in the Washington Post looking at how alternative energy has turned former dot-com players into cleantech boosters — venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, even so-called “high-tech” mags like Business 2.0 and Wired. The author of the piece, Slate writer Daniel Gross, says the alternative energy boom could be following in the footsteps of the dot-com boom. That, he says, would be a good thing. “Many of these venture-backed alternative-energy firms will fail, and some of the publicly held ethanol stocks will turn out to be turkeys. But fierce competition will lead to price reductions of energy-saving equipment. The vast sums being plowed into research may lead to incremental improvements or revolutionary breakthroughs. And as more giant companies such as Wal-Mart go green, the industry will gain scale — a development that usually leads to price reductions for all consumers.”
For the dozens of failures that do happen, there will be a Google or Amazon or eBay that will succeed. If the cleantech space follows this path, I agree, this would be a good thing.