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Element 8 co-chair Eric Berman. (Element 8 photo)

Element 8, a Seattle angel investor group focused on funding cleantech startups, announced Thursday that it invested $6.1 million in 27 companies last year. That’s the highest yearly dollar amount the group has seen since it was founded in 2006.

The 2016 cohort includes Seattle-based utilities software company EnergySavvy, Redmond-based agriculture tech company WISErg, and Seattle-based sustainable textile producer Evrnu, along with other startups from the Seattle area and across the country.

The group invested in 11 new startups last year, and made follow-on investments in 16.

The numbers are good news for Element 8, which saw a drop in funds in the previous year. The group went from investing $5.7 million in 2014 to investing just $3.3 million in 2015.

The 2016 numbers show promise for the group and for the cleantech industry as a whole.

“The amount of funding not only reflects the strength of new and follow-on investment opportunities across the cleantech sector, but also the range of mechanisms, from debt to equity, and from syndication to the Element 8 Fund,” Eric Berman, co-chair of Element 8, said in a press release. “Element 8 and its members continue to be the go-to resource that connects innovative cleantech companies with investors seeking purpose-driven and impactful returns.”

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