GE's cleantech contest highlights 3 trends to watch

GE this week announced 12 winners in the first $55 million phase of its venture-funded $200 million Ecoimagination contest. The worldwide competition aims to hunt down the most promising cleantech startups, an area GE is actively investing in and chief executive Jeffrey Immelt has underscored in recent moves and speeches.

On the GreenBeat: Cleantech investment keeps falling, Crosslink Capital closes $200 million fund

Investors putting money into cleantech have declined every quarter since early 2009, according to a report from Kachan & Co. Early-stage cleantech investment has especially suffered – according to Reuters, 20 percent of all cleantech venture capital went to early-stage and seed funding in the first half of 2010, down from 35 percent in 2007. China’s cleantech IPOs and M&A activity continues to lead the rest of the world by nearly fourfold.