Author Archives: Matthew Nordan

Nest Installation Photo Log

tl;dr: Mrs. Nordan vs. Nest thermostat! Will it take an afternoon to install? Will we ruin our house in the process? No on both counts! In June we installed a Nest Learning Thermostat in chez Nordan; I helmed the camera … Continue reading

Posted in Consumers, Energy efficiency, Smart grid | 2 Comments

What Makes a Great Cleantech Team?

tl;dr: Winning cleantech start-up teams are complete at founding, have strong pre-existing relationships, and include the inventor of the core technology. This post was co-written with Josh Rogers, a former Venrock intern who’s now in National Grid’s Strategic Planning and … Continue reading

Posted in Numbers | 5 Comments

Bright Future for the Marginal Megawatt

tl;dr: Life is about to get a lot better for demand response and energy efficiency companies. One of the challenges of venture capital is that you invest in companies now based on what you know now, but the world may … Continue reading

Posted in Demand response, Energy efficiency | 9 Comments

“Financing Your Start-up 101” in 45 Minutes

For this year’s ARPA-E Summit I was asked to give a talk about different ways to finance an energy start-up. The challenge as it was given to me was “cover all sources of financing – VC, angels, grants, debt, everything … Continue reading

Posted in Unsolicited advice, Venture capital | Leave a comment

Why I Suspend Disbelief

tl;dr: Arrogant humans think we have the natural world all figured out. We don’t. I spend a small but meaningful amount of my time at Venrock intentionally looking at crazy stuff. If you are developing a cold fusion generator or … Continue reading

Posted in Leprechauns | 3 Comments

How I Missed My Window to Short Natural Gas

tl;dr: Saw it coming. Didn’t act. D’oh. I did a podcast recently about water treatment in oil and gas for Platt’s, the veteran trade publisher in the sector. We focused specifically on flowback water and produced water from shale sites. … Continue reading

Posted in Oil and gas | 1 Comment

Who Wins ARPA-E Grants?

tl;dr: You can’t cheat your way to an ARPA-E grant by gaming the system. The program appears to be run in a remarkably unbiased fashion. Most folks in energy start-up land know that ARPA-E – the U.S. government agency launched … Continue reading

Posted in Current events, Numbers | 4 Comments