Heterogeneity in the sources of finance matters for innovation outcomes. We study how investor types differ in their investment size and thereby affect renewable energy technology commercialization via scale economies. We build a dataset of 44,417 private and 12,366 public investments into nine renewable energy technologies in 83 countries for the years 2004-2017, overlapping with the commercialisation periods of these technologies. We distinguish various investor types and focus on financial investors. Using a hierarchical model, we show that banks and institutional investors make larger and smaller investments respectively than non-financial project developers, with further heterogeneity across technology year clusters. Public investment has a quantitatively important positive effect on private investment size, which is more pronounced for banks than for institutional investors, including abroad through strong international spill-overs. Our results indicate that commercialization outcomes can be impacted by heterogeneous investor types and that public financing elicits scale economies.
READ THE WORKING PAPER: Heterogeneous investors, scale economies and the commercialisation of innovative renewable energy technologies
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