Chrysalix maps expansion

Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital is looking to double the size of its $78 million European affiliate fund and is considering launching similar affiliate funds in India and Southeast Asia, says Michael Brown, the firm’s executive director.

Chrysalix, based in Vancouver, B.C., partnered with asset manager Robeco to launch Sustainable Energy Technology Venture Partners (SET) in Europe last December. The fund received commitments from Delta NV and Essent NV.

“We have a strong indication from people that doubling that [fund] won’t be too hard of a problem,” Brown says.

Chrysalix is also considering expanding its affiliate program after being approached by an organization that had heard about its European partnership. “We’ve been talking to some people who have access to money in the Middle East and feet on the street in Mumbai,” Brown notes.

An India fund would likely start out at the same size as the firm’s European fund.

Chrysalix takes a piece of its affiliate’s fees and carry. Still, Brown is anxious that the investors his firm partners with remain independent. “We’ve made it clear to the two guys that are operating in Europe that we have no right to be associated with the next fund, but want to add enough value to make them believe that we bring a lot to the table,” he says. “I want to find guys that want to be in charge. I don’t want to hire employees.”

SET is run by Managing Directors Rene Savelsberg, who formerly led the corporate venture arm of electronics giant Philips, and Wouter Jonk, who was the CFO Philips’ health care incubator.

The SET-Chrysalix partnership made its first joint investment in June, backing lithium-ion battery recharging company Epyon with an undisclosed amount. The Netherlands-based company was spun out of Delft University of Technology and is targeting the market for quickly recharging electric vehicles.

Chrysalix raised its first fund, a $32 million vehicle, in 2001 and closed a $70 million fund in 2005. The firm may soon be back out for more money itself, but it won’t be looking for hundreds of millions of dollars, says Brown. “If you get to be too big, you start not being early stage.” —Alexander HaislipDEALWATCH

Five recent investments by Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital

Company – Description

BridgeLux Inc. – LED technology for lighting markets.

Epyon BV – Charging solutions to batteries.

Fat Spaniel Technologies Inc. – Software for energy system monitoring.

H2scan LLC – Hydrogen leak detection monitoring systems.

ReliOn Inc. – Fuel cell technology.

Source: Thomson Reuters