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Energy & Sustainability Organization Feature: The Clean Fight New York

Our friend Steven Berkenfeld continues to help companies tackling sustainability and resiliency challenges in numerous ways, including as a board member at The Clean Fight New York.

This month, we are excited to spotlight The Clean Fight NY’s Buildings Edition program, which is open for applications until July 19, 2020. The Clean Fight NY is a not-for-profit accelerator that helps growth-stage clean energy companies from around the world expand their operations in New York to help meet the state’s future energy and efficiency needs, while boosting economic opportunity and job creation. The organization is powered by New Energy Nexus and funded by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. The Buildings Edition program aims to bring together the best growth-stage companies and visionary corporate partners to scale solutions to turn New York’s unique building stock clean.

The Clean Fight NY is currently accepting applications to fill its 2020 inaugural cohort. Applicants should be growth-stage start-ups focused on clean building solutions in areas including but not limited to efficiency and electrification solutions, clean energy sources, next-gen HVAC and heat-pumps, next-gen materials, envelope solutions, and intelligent buildings. In light of the implications for buildings and the communities they serve as a result of COVID-19, The Clean Fight NY is also looking for clean building solutions with additional health and wellness benefits that will enable tenants to safely and confidently work and live.

To be eligible, companies must (1) display ~$1M+ in annual revenue (2019 or last 12 months), (2) demonstrate sufficient runway to participate in the program from November 2020 to March 2021, and (3) exhibit a genuine interest in establishing a principal place for business, manufacturing, or research and development in New York State. Additional information can be found in the Buildings Edition application packet.

Approximately 8-12 companies will be selected into the program with $1.25M available in funding. Successful applicants will be eligible to apply for a grant up to $500k to support partnerships resulting from corporate matchmaking. Additional benefits include biweekly advisory calls, three summits focused on corporate introductions and doing business in New York, and $25k ̵ $30k in technical support to help scaling. The Clean Fight NY’s Evaluation Committee will review applications based on the following criteria: greenhouse gas impact, job creation potential, management talent, program fit, offering, and demand. Both US and international growth-stage companies are encouraged to apply and no relocation is required to participate in the program.

In response to The Clean Fight NY’s inaugural application, Managing Director Kate Frucher, commented, “The Clean Fight has big ambitions. We want to ensure that the most promising growth-stage companies from around the world can realize their potential in New York. But, beyond that, we want to catalyze a broader conversation and action in the business community on how to decarbonize New York State while driving equity into the sector.”

For more information, visit The Clean Fight NY’s FAQ page. We encourage prospective applicants to reach out to Mintz to help assess eligibility or assemble their application.


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Thomas R. Burton, III

Member / Chair, Energy & Sustainability Practice

Tom Burton has helped to shape the clean energy industry by drawing on his passion for innovation. As a Mintz attorney, Tom counsels investors, entrepreneurs, and Fortune 100 companies. He also guides start-up organizations and accelerators to foster the next generation of energy leaders.

Sahir Surmeli

Member / Co-chair, Energy & Sustainability Practice

Sahir Surmeli is a Mintz business counselor who advises companies, boards, entrepreneurs, investment banks, and venture and private equity investors as they build and grow companies. He handles public offerings, 144A and private financings, acquisitions, joint ventures, and strategic partnerships.