Interviewed as part of the SOSV Climate Tech Summit, Bill Gates shared his opinion on green technologies. He believes that this sector, comparable to that of the Internet, will be at the origin of the next Microsoft or Google.
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates recently participated in the SOSV Climate Tech Summit. This virtual event is an opportunity for start-ups fighting against climate change to come together. Guest of honor, Bill Gates took advantage of the summit to answer a few questions and share his opinion on the movement greentech also called cleantech. For the American billionaire, companies specializing in green technologies are the future and this sector could well be at the origin of the giants of tomorrow.
Bill Gates dared to draw a parallel with the technology and Internet market which gave birth to the Gafams that are Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple and Microsoft. He assures us that the green technology sector will be the next to see the emergence of such powerful firms. “There will be companies like Microsoft, Google, Amazon that will come out of this space”, believes the man who co-founded Microsoft in 1975. Along with Apple, these companies are now among the largest market capitalizations. Bill Gates also expects innovation to tackle climate change to lead to the birth of “Eight Tesla, ten Tesla”.
The next bubble could be green
The firm of Elon Musk, specializing in electric vehicles, has established itself among these giants in recent years and recently passed the symbolic milestone of 1,000 billion dollars in valuation. The value of the company doubled last year and Tesla has grown over 2,000% in the five years, CNBC said. “Everyone who has invested in Tesla feels very smart”, smiles Bill Gates. The former head of the Redmond firm sees many opportunities in this “green” sector and ensures that the returns on investment will be comparable to those of the largest technology companies. He also predicts that the electric vehicle sector will not be the only one to prevail and that the gains will be distributed among a greater number of companies.
For Bill Gates, start-ups specializing in green technologies have a bright future ahead of them. © PopTika / Shutterstock
The sector will need governments
Optimist, Bill Gates also specifies that a lot of money will be lost, as was the case when the dot-com bubble burst. Certain fields such as nuclear fusion, nuclear fission or energy storage require “Hundreds of millions, even, in the case of nuclear power, billions” dollars to be tested, he says. “You are not quite sure that these technologies will be able to contribute”, adds the one who has been among the richest personalities in the world since 1996.
He estimates that “We will have a high failure rate”, but that there are enough ideas that “We have a probability of substantial success”. Bill Gates, however, is counting on the authorities’ help to get green technologies off the ground, believing that they will need appropriate government assistance and “Encouraging policies”. According to him, investors who are interested in this sector but do not want to take too much risk “Can participate in the financing of solar parks”. For their part, markets such as the extraction of CO2 from the air, hydrogen, steel or aviation fuel are more difficult to predict.
Finally, he warns that this is a long-term investment: “If someone can’t afford to take risks or if you expect short-term returns, look elsewhere. “