A study released today is a great follow-up to our story about how 2006 was a huge year for big product releases and major acquisitions.
According to a global year end analysis by Dow Jones VentureOne and Ernst & Young, venture-capital activity in the U.S., Europe, China and Israel in 2006 is poised to hit a five-year high, registering the highest annual investments since 2001. This year, investment is expected to top $32 billion after the fourth quarter.
Along with the strong investment growth, the analysis showed strong interest in emerging industries, such as "cleantech" and Web 2.0.
In the U.S. so far this year, $585.6 million has been invested in 60 companies focused on clean technology, which uses natural resources efficiently or reduces the ecological impact of production. That is 30 percent more than what was invested in all of 2005.