The Week In Cleantech (May 18 – May 24) – Is AMSC A Dog?

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On Monday, Richard T. Stuebi at Cleantech Blog discussed the war for talent in cleatech. An interesting look into personnel recruitment issues in the cleantech/alt energy sectors, and perhaps a sign that the industry is maturing. My own experience in MBA school is that cleantech remains an industry that very few students seriously consider as a career option, even though there is a multitude of ways one can leverage an interest in this industry professionally. Hopefully this will change. On Tuesday, Tyler Hamilton at Clean Break argued that smart grid represents a new boom opportunity for IT. An interesting piece on how established telcos and and IT companies are getting involved in smart grid, which will present tremendous opportunities in the years ahead. Successful involvement in smart grid programs has the potential to generate rates of return much higher than what telcos are accustomed to, so with their relatively cheap cost of capital this could create real shareholder value. Definitely something to watch given the potential size of this market. On Tuesday, Steve Gelsi at MarketWatch told us that Jefferies was eying cleantech IPOs later this year. The correction in equity markets experienced earlier this year hit alt energy stocks particularly hard, but things seemed to have improved markedly in the last couple of months, even as the state of the US economy remains a matter of debate. Is this a leading indicator of good things to come for the sector, or is it merely a short-lived bump before another bust? On Tuesday, Toby Shute at The Motley Fool told us that Pacific Ethanol was not dead yet. An interesting point made about the capacity to switch feedstock as a competitive advantage (which, incidentally, many corn ethanol producers don’t have). On Wednesday, Edward Silver at the LA Times informed us that in the wind-power biz, we needed to beware giving some stocks a whirl. A bearish take on two stocks: one on which investors have been bearish (NASDAQ:ZOLT) and one on which they have been bullish (NASDAQ:AMSC). The latter undoubtedly qualifies as a squarely contrarian call, at least according to what Motley Fool users across categories think of this stock. Thanks to Climateer for this one.


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