During the Cleantech Venture Day in Lahti we gave a special award (a pice of raku art by Dan Leonette) to Lassi Noponen from Finland. This was the first award of this kind and also marked the opening of a Scandinavian Cleantech Hall of Fame, where we will continue to award people like Lassi who have inspired others in the Nordic cleantech industry, helping to accelerate Nordic cleantech development and growth. Lassi was a true early mover in the Nordic cleantech industry. He started cleantech focus investment firm Proventia as early as 2000. WinWinD was the result of a spin-off in that time and Lassi was the chairman of WinWinD when the investment from Masdar Cleantech Fund went into the company.
The official motivation is: “For showing by example that big capital injections from international actors are possible in the Nordic cleantech sector. The investment by Masdar Cleantech Fund in WinWinD was a milestone for Nordic start-ups looking for investors in the commercialisation stage. It was the single largest cleantech investment by far in year 2008 and helped place the Nordic region on the international cleantech capital map.”