Global warming, climate change and Greta Thunberg: Right now there’s nothing more frequently addressed in daily newspapers than the world and its environmental degradation. The melting of polar ice caps and forest fires in Australia are only some of the side effects. To concern the global changes it is important to initiate a shift from traditional sources of energy to more environmentally friendly sources: renewable energies. Wind, wave and solar power are favorable sources of energy that do not harm our earth. In the recent past family offices also have recognized the importance of this topic and made investments regarding renewable energies. We want to provide you a short overview of five single family offices, that invest in companies or projects that focus on renewable energies. All of them are part of our massive database of more than 350 single family offices located in the United States. Also relevant in this context is the list of the largest renewable energy investors in Europe, provided by our partner renewables.digital.
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This article directly stems from the research process for our global single family office database. Our list of US single family offices includes the most important family investment vehicles that invest in various areas, such as financial markets, real estate, venture capital, private equity and renewables. We also offer a dedicated renewable energy single family office list.
#1: Capricorn Investment Group, New York
The family office, based in New York, serves as the personal investment arm of Jeff Skoll, who co-founded eBay and has an estimated net worth of almost 5 billion U.S. dollars today. Capricorn Investment Group seeks to deliver extraordinary investment results by leveraging market forces to scale solutions to global problems, such as global warming. Besides of renewable energy investments, the firm is active in real estate and proceeds almost all of its investments through funds. Their current portfolio includes the startup “Form Energy”. Form Energy is developing a new class of ultra low cost, long duration energy storage systems to make renewable energy available even when the sun sets, or the wind stops blowing. Form’s technology has the potential to transform the electric grid by making renewable energy dispatchable year-round.
#2: Zoma Capital, Denver
Zoma Capital is run by Lucy and Ben Walton, the grandson of Walmart founder Sam Walton. ZOMA Capital invests in a broad range of market-based sustainable solutions advancing energy, water, and regional economic resiliency in Chile and Colorado. Its global investment portfolio spans multiple asset classes and sectors with an emphasis on addressing environmental and social challenges. One recent investment in the fields of renewable energies is “AMP Solar Group”. The Group builds, owns and operates clean energy assets both behind and in front of the meter. Its solutions allow them to provide dispatchable, affordable and resilient clean power to enhance system reliability and security for customers and the grid.
#3: ARB Inc, West Conshohocken
The family office is based in West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, and is led by Harry Halloran, CEO of the American Refining Group, who served at the board of The American Wind Energy Association. The relatively small investment company holds and manages a portfolio of operating wind assets as well as private company, private equity fund and project equity investments. The Halloran family invests in climate change driven sectors including renewable energy technologies and services, water technologies and services, waste to value, energy efficiency, biomass and biofuels, and sustainable agriculture. Current investments are, for example, “Cool Planet Energy Systems” and “Frontier Wind”. Cool Planet is developing a technology to convert non-food biomass into green fuels that are chemically identical to fossil fuels. Frontier Wind designs and sells technologies for modern utility scale wind turbines including proprietary wind speed sensing, bat avoidance and active load management.
#4: The Husseini Group, Beverly Hills
The group, located in Beverly Hills, serves as the personal single family office of Ibrahim AlHusseini, a serial entrepreneur and impact investor. He is dedicated to addressing the growing global waste crisis and is the founder and CEO of FullCycle. The family office invests in growth companies that embrace social enhancement and ecological sustainability. To date, AlHusseini has raised half a billion dollars in impact-focused capital. An exemplary investment is “Bloom Energy”. Bloom Energy offers on-site power generation systems that utilize an innovative new fuel cell technology with roots in NASA’s Mars program. Derived from a common sand-like powder, and leveraging breakthrough advances in materials science, this technology is able to produce clean, reliable, affordable power, practically anywhere, from a wide range of renewable or traditional fuels.
#5: Keller Enterprises, Charlottesville
Keller Enterprises, another small single family office based in Charlottesville, Virginia, was founded by Caroline “Polly” Keller in 1998. She had the vision that it could be a company cooperatively, imaginatively and productively run by subsequent generations of the Keller Family. The firm combines venture investing, venture philanthropy and venture farming and operates the “Inglewood Farm” in Central Louisiana. Keller Enterprises’ investments focus mainly on energy, agriculture and real estate. One major investment is “Apex Clean Energy”. With its diversified portfolio of wind energy facilities in development around the country and its solar PV assets, the company has become one of the fastest-growing companies in the industry since its founding in 2009. The company’s management team comprises experts from throughout the industry whose collective prior experience includes the development, financing, construction and operation of over $10 billion in wind and solar energy facilities now operating in the United States.
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