Transformative Technologies 2011: Final Four voting, what went right and wrong?

September 18, 2011 |

Final Four (round five) voting finished on Friday in the Transformative Technologies 2011 tournament. Once again, favorites did not fare well, with both Novozymes and Solazyme falling to Terrabon and Joule Unlimited respectively.

What went right and wrong?

1. With a little help from my friends. In the voting, we noted that a lot of supporting ballots came in from partners – especially marketing, investment and research partners.

3. Ballot synchronization. We noted a lot of ballots coming in voting for both Terrabon and Joule – no way to tell if this is coincidence, or vote-swapping (which is not forbidden under the rules, but is not exactly in the spirit of the tournament).

4. Are those underdogs really underdogs? Five companies recorded upsets in the round of 32, and four of the five steamrolled to victory in the Sweet Sixteen, and three continued through in the Elite Eight – and two find themselves in the final: #6 Central seed Terrabon, #7 East seed Joule Unlimited. What do they have in common? Passionate fan bases for their differentiated technologies – Terrabon’s MixAlco, and Joule’s SolarConverter. , Novozymes’ enzyme technologies, which have a passionate fan base, paid the price for being up against another company with a similarly enthusiastic base.

5. Ground game. A good “get out the vote” effort helps – companies like Terrabon went to lengths to remind their supporters among Digest subscribers to fill out their ballots, and we noted that a lot of partner companies voted en masse.

6. Hard to find the ballot. We heard from one company that at least one corporate ISPs may have inadvertently spam-filtered the Digest (which carries the ballots) last week, keeping some subscriber-employees from voting. Very important for companies and individuals to add [email protected] to their list of safe email senders.

Voting is open to all Biofuels Digest subscribers. Voting links are in the Biofuels Digest daily newsletter. To subscribe (free), visit here.

Transformative Technologies is a subscriber-voted, “knock-out” tournament which measures the impact of the competitor’s technologies on the bioenergy landscape. More than 400 pages of data on all the competitors (and more) is available here – also, individual match-ups include links to the most recent profiles submitted by companies for the 2011-12 50 Hottest Companies in Bioenergy, which is coming up for voting in the 4th quarter of 2011.

The complete tournament bracket, with the most up to date scoring, is available for download here.

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