Top Cleantech Innovators Announced at the Industry Growth Forum

Five Startups Shine Among Some of the World’s Best Cleantech Entrepreneurs

May 10, 2019 | Contact media relations

Six people pose for an award photo.

NREL’s 2019 Industry Growth Forum and Emerging Markets Day recognized five cleantech startup companies for excellence in innovation. Photo by Kira Vos.

Being a cleantech start up takes skill and smarts and a willingness to take risks. Today, as the National Renewable Energy Laboratory wrapped up the Industry Growth Forum (IGF) and Emerging Markets Day (EMD), that risk was rewarded as five companies were recognized for excellence.

The winners were selected from a field of 40 companies that pitched at IGF and 10 companies that pitched at EMD. Earlier this year, those companies had been selected from a field of more than 200 companies that had applied to present at either EMD or IGF, or both.

“The companies awarded today represent the best and brightest in cleantech innovation,” said NREL’s Innovation & Entrepreneurship Center director, Richard Adams. “We’re proud to be a part of their journey as they set out to change the world.”

The World Market

Emerging Markets Day, held May 8, annually brings together investors and entrepreneurs focused on introducing sustainable and accessible energy technologies in the developing world. This year’s award winners:

GreenFire Energy received the top prize for EMD, the Best Venture award. This Emeryville, Calif.-based company has developed a closed-loop, grid-scale geothermal energy power generation technology for well retrofits and greenfield projects.

60Hertz received the EMD People’s Choice Award. The company, based in Anchorage, has created a microgrid maintenance platform that is suited to diesel, solar, batteries, small hydro, and wind.

Forum for Change

The Industry Growth Forum, held May 9-10, annually convenes cleantech entrepreneurs, investors, and industry experts to build relationships, showcase innovative technologies, and explore disruptive business solutions. This year, 475 cleantech advocates and stakeholders attended the event.

This year’s award winners:

75F received both the 2019 Best Venture Award and the People’s Choice Award. The Burnsville, Minn.-based company has created a suite of wireless sensors, controllers, and cloud-based software that provides predictive, proactive, and energy-efficient building comfort.

Inergybased in Pocatello, Idaho, won an Outstanding Venture award for its plug-and-play energy storage solutions for a variety of markets.

SolPad, headquartered in Mountain View, Calif., won an Outstanding Venture award for its self-contained inverter plus storage, and microgrid system.

For a list of participating companies and sponsors, and for more information on the Industry Growth Forum and Emerging Markets Day, see and