Jan 27, 2017

Clean energy VCs team up for a new fund

Congruent Ventures is a new VC firm on the block, and it's targeting $50 million for its first fund, according to a new SEC filing. The Oakland-based firm also filed separately for a "follow-on" fund that also has $50 million target, although it's unclear is this is a separate vehicle or some sort of sidecar.

The partners: Abe Yokell, who spent the past 12 years with RockPort Capital Partners, where he focused on clean-tech and sustainability; and Joshua Posamentier, who joined Prelude Ventures in 2012 to focus on areas like energy, sustainability, and agriculture. They are the only ones listed.

The firm: Not much is publicly available about Congruent Ventures, although a sparse website describes the firm as " investing in sustainable technologies."

  • Clean-tech investments have gone in and out of fashion in the past decade. After a rush of interest from firms like Kleiner Perkins about 10 years ago, disappointing results caused many investors to retreat from the category. Launching a new fund now is particularly interesting: On the one hand, you have increasing interest in electric cars, alternative food production and global concerns about climate change. On the other, you have a White House that seems much more interested in fossil fuels than in clean technologies, let alone climate change.

Yokell declined to comment on the fund, citing regulatory restrictions.

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McConnell blocks resolution condemning Trump's actions against peaceful protesters

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blocked a resolution introduced by Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday that would have condemned the use of tear gas and rubber bullets against peaceful protesters outside the White House on Monday in order to allow President Trump to walk to St. John's Church.

What they're saying: "Justice for black Americans in the face of unjust violence, and peace for our country in the face of looting, riots, and domestic terror. Those are the two issues Americans want addressed," McConnell said on the Senate floor.

George W. Bush breaks silence on George Floyd

Goerge Bush in Michigan in 2009. Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Former President George W. Bush (R) wrote in a statement Tuesday that he and his wife, Laura, are "anguished" by the death of George Floyd, and said that "it is time for America to examine our tragic failures."

Why it matters: It's a stark juxtaposition when compared to fellow Republican President Trump's response to current civil unrest. While Trump has called for justice in Floyd's death, he's also condemned protestors and threatened to deploy military personnel if demonstrations continue.

Updated 59 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Updates: George Floyd protests continue for 8th day

Police officers wearing riot gear push back demonstrators outside of the White House on Monday. Photo: Jose Luis Magana/AFP via Getty Images

Protests over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people continued across the U.S. for the eighth consecutive day, prompting a federal response from the National Guard, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection.

The latest: The Minnesota Department of Human Rights announced an investigation on Tuesday into the conduct of the Minneapolis Police Department over the past decade, after filing a civil rights charge related to the death of George Floyd.