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The i3 Platform: A (Paid) Crunchbase For Green Startups?

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A research firm focused on clean energy and green innovation, the Cleantech Group, launched its i3 Platform today— and it’s something like a paid Crunchbase, with a dash of Alltop and Gartner, for green tech ventures.

The product became privately available to some of Cleantech Group’s clients in late May. Now, some of the i3 Platform is available for free public use via Research.cleantech.com. Free users get basic search and brief— as in one sentence— company profiles.

Paid subscribers to i3, however, get access to detailed company profiles, complete search results, market mapping tools (see: image below) regular Industry Insights and quarterly investment reports from the Cleantech Group.

The product is meant to help the firm’s clients see how green tech players are connecting, and what relationships have led to the successful commercialization of energy, and environmental problem-solving technologies.

The i3 Platform is populated with Cleantech Group’s new and archived research about: investments, acquisitions, companies and their inter-connectedness in the cleantech space. Cleantech Group also invites entrepreneurs to submit to or update their company profiles within the i3 system.

Any user-submitted content that it publishes via i3 will be verified and edited by Cleantech Group analysts, said the firm’s chief executive officer Sheeraz Haji. He calls this not user-generated, but “structured contributed content.”

On its submissions page, i3 requires users to disclose whether or not they are seeking funding, currently. Could the i3 Platform become a kind of specialized AngelList? Haji said it’s not in the cards:

“We have always connected fund seekers with prospective investors by providing good visibility, and information across the board. Our customers can log in and search for which companies in the system are raising capital, maybe in this state or that region, or in these sectors or subsectors of cleantech. We’re not building that to take a piece of equity or to get a transaction fee, though.”

[Ed's note: Crunchbase is TechCrunch's open database of technology ventures, investors, products and deals. It includes user generated content, data and graphics, research from our staff and contributors, and aggregated news links from valid sources online. Any researchers and developers can use the Crunchbase API to access our data, and use it in their systems. Cleantech Group is not doing so yet, but has expressed some interest.]