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Cleantech Group, Credit Suisse and Consensus Business Group Announce Strategic Business Relationship

The Cleantech Group, Credit Suisse and the Consensus Business Group today announced a strategic business relationship to accelerate global investment in clean technologies.

As part of the strategic business relationship, Credit Suisse and funds advised by Consensus Business Group acquired minority equity positions in the Cleantech Group.

Cleantech Group research indicates venture capital flows into the cleantech category over the last five years have shown a relative 253% increase over other venture capital categories. Since 2001, the venture capital class has invested over $21 billion in the cleantech category, and an additional $25 billion could be capitalized through the 2010 period.

The strategic business relationship signals the launch of multiple global investment products encompassing private equity vehicles, new blended instruments and structured products tailored to the unique drivers of the cleantech investment category, as well as advisory services to assist governments, corporations and fund managers.

The strategic business relationship aligns the respective strengths of three global leaders:

(1) Cleantech Group, founder of the cleantech investment category, is comprised of a member base of 1,500 of the world’s leading cleantech investors. Its market-creating suite of investor-focused services are utilized by more than 18,000 investors and high growth companies as well as informing and enhancing corporations, governments, policy-makers and service providers globally.

(2) Credit Suisse, a leading global bank providing its clients with investment banking, private banking and asset management services worldwide. Credit Suisse offers a broad range of products and services in the environmental finance segment. Credit Suisse's environmental finance businesses include leading franchises in Alternative Energy Investment Banking, Cleantech private equity, and Carbon Trading and Investment Products developed for its Private Banking business.

(3) Consensus Business Group is a leading cleantech investment advisor and has advised on more than $400m of investments in the cleantech sector. Consensus’s investments span the full range of early to late stage technology companies as well as large positions in environmental infrastructure projects. Consensus makes use of a number of innovative financial and investment models and seeks to extract synergies from its investee companies and its $10bn property portfolio, which includes 300,000 UK residential freehold units. Consensus Business Group acts as advisor to the Trustees of a Family Trust which are its ultimate beneficial owners.

“Transforming the global economy towards more efficient use of natural resources and reduced ecological impact is the primary task of our age and offers greater wealth creation potential than the prior high-tech and biotech investment cycles,” said Nicholas Parker, co-founder and chair of the Cleantech Group. “With this strategic business relationship, we align the global reach and resources of our three organizations to significantly increase global capital allocations toward solving the most pressing issues of our time while generating exceptional financial returns.”

Michael Philipp, Chairman and CEO of Credit Suisse for the Europe, Middle East and Africa region, said: “This transaction expands Credit Suisse’s leadership in environmental finance and underscores our deep commitment to this important high-growth sector. This strategic business relationship will allow us to leverage Cleantech Group’s industry-leading knowledge in resource efficiency for the benefit of Credit Suisse's clients across our investment banking, private banking and asset management businesses."

Vincent Tchenguiz, Chairman of Consensus Business Group added: “Consensus Business Group has had a strategic focus on the environmental sector for a number of years. We have developed innovative business models to deliver strong financial returns and a strategic value-add to our investee companies. We see our relationship with Cleantech Group as integral to our future investment strategy and our plans to expand our profile as an advisor in the cleantech sector. We look forward to working with Cleantech Group to bring Consensus’ new offerings to market.”

According to Cleantech Group research, annual capital allocation growth rates within the cleantech category over the preceding three years have show promising momentum, with a 33% increase between 2004-2005 and a 125% increase between 2005-2006.

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