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The Business Journal reported some cheerful news for entrepreneurs:

In the second quarter of 2006 alone, fifty venture capital funds raised a total of $11.2 billion — the highest level in five years, Heesen says. Venture capital firms invested $6.3 billion in 856 deals during the past quarter, representing the highest dollar amount invested by VC funds and the most deals signed since the first quarter of 2002.

“The U.S. venture capital industry is in its best period than at any other time in the past 15 years,” Heesen says. “It’s a very stable environment. Funds are not over-investing and there’s not just one hot technology that everyone is running after.”

Perhaps it is true that no single technology is garnering excessive attention. However, “clean-tech,” consisting of businesses in fields like “water purification, solar power, biofuels, materials based on nanotechnology and clean-coal technology,” is starting to break out by raising over a half billion in just one quarter:

Clean-tech businesses received a record $513 million in venture capital in the first quarter, according to the latest figures available from the Cleantech Venture Network. The first quarter saw 67 companies getting financial backing, down from 73 in the fourth quarter of 2005 but up from 49 in the first quarter of 2005.

Furthermore, the National Venture Capital Association reported an increase in seed and early-stage deals, making this a great time for experienced entrepreneurs to get a new venture launched. Let’s see how long this window of opportunity stays open.

Akira Hirai

Akira is the Founder & CEO of Cayenne Consulting. He has over 30 years of experience both as an entrepreneur and helping other entrepreneurs succeed. Akira earned his BA in Engineering Sciences from Harvard University. View details.

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