company scouts for new tech, backs accelerator project looking to address climate change
Houston — Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures (SAEV) scouted for new technologies at Rice University’s annual Energy Tech Venture Forum in Houston, where startups pitched potential investors, and funders assessed new breakthroughs in a virtual conference environment. The SAEV team in Houston heard pitches from dozens of companies as it looks for strategic solutions that can be used across Aramco’s businesses, and will follow up with 16 startups for closer reviews in the coming months to see if any of them would ultimately be a good fit.
Clean Energy Accelerator Project
SAEV also became a founding sponsor of Rice’s Clean Energy Accelerator Project, which was launched at the end of the conference and will be housed at the Ion innovation hub in Houston.
“Rice, SAEV, and our other partners have made important strides developing Houston’s innovation ecosystem in recent years, and this new initiative will really take things to the next level,” said Jim Sledzik, managing director of SAEV-U.S.
Through a collaborative approach, the accelerator project will nurture technologists, researchers, and innovators, ensuring that great ideas have the support needed to more fully realize their commercial potential.
The accelerator project will include a hands-on, 12-week program to support early-stage energy startups from across the U.S. and from around the world. Startups will have access to Rice’s network of energy corporations, energy investors, and energy advisors to increase their likelihood of success and accelerate their path forward.
an eye toward addressing climate change
The new initiative will focus specifically on technologies that help address climate challenges.
It will be leveraging a strong ecosystem. Rice’s energy tech venture capital conference, now in its 18th year, has brought together more than 840 energy tech startups over the years to raise billions in funding.
The accelerator is also supported by BP, Chevron Technology Ventures, ExxonMobil, NRG, Shell, Total, and Halliburton Labs.
The event was attended by Houston mayor Sylvester Turner, who said the accelerator will help the fourth largest U.S. city reach its goals of becoming carbon neutral by 2050, and spawn a new generation of companies active in the energy transition.
“The Clean Energy Accelerator is a great example of what we have been seeking to build in Houston. An innovation ecosystem that can develop creative solutions to address our toughest challenges,” Turner told the digital audience.