Connecticut Innovations Portfolio Company, Greenworks Lending, Announces Acquisition by Nuveen
Leading global provider of cleantech financing for commercial property owners and developers poised to scale with access to Nuveen’s extensive market reach and industry expertise
NEW HAVEN, Conn. (April 13, 2021) – Connecticut Innovations (CI), Connecticut’s strategic venture capital arm and the leading source of financing and ongoing support for innovative, growing companies, today announced that its portfolio company, Greenworks Lending, the nation’s preeminent C-PACE capital provider, has been acquired by Nuveen, the global investment manager of TIAA.
Based in Darien, Connecticut, Greenworks is dedicated to funding energy performance-enhancing commercial, multi-family, and nonprofit real estate projects. The acquisition marks a milestone for the rapidly growing Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) industry, as Greenworks joins an organization with $1.2 trillion in assets under management. 
Greenworks was started in 2015 by co-founders Jessica Bailey, CEO, and Ali Cooley, CIO, who met at the Connecticut Green Bank while developing and launching the Connecticut C-PACE Program – the first successful C-PACE program in the country. In just a few years, Greenworks scaled to more than 50 employees, bringing its innovative financing to commercial property owners and developers in more than two dozen states. To date, Greenworks has financed 138 projects in Connecticut, and more than 400 nationwide.
“This announcement is an amazing accomplishment for Greenworks and Connecticut,” said Governor Ned Lamont. “Jessica and Ali have grown their team in a short time and have identified a partner that will help Greenworks expand its global footprint. This is yet another example of a company growing and thriving in Connecticut, and this should make our state proud. I applaud the entire team and look forward to its continued success in the future.”
“Greenworks is a pioneer in developing and scaling C-PACE as a cost-efficient marketplace solution for property owners and municipalities to pursue energy-efficiency solutions for their commercial buildings,” says Jose Minaya, CEO of Nuveen. “The company is a triple-win demonstration of doing well by doing right: Investors get access to attractive yields, borrowers get a net reduction in operating costs through the utility savings, and the environment benefits too.”
“Greenworks was established with the mission to mitigate climate change by providing attractive capital to property owners to promote clean energy. C-PACE brings benefits to local businesses, energy security, and the environment,” said Jessica Bailey, CEO of Greenworks. “In Nuveen, we’ve found the ideal partner with a shared philosophy who will allow us to expand access to C-PACE financing for more property owners in more states. Nuveen’s diversified investment expertise in private credit, real estate and municipal finance, global reach, and 50-year heritage of responsible investing will allow us to accelerate and amplify our mission.”
“Jessica, Ali, and their team built Greenworks from an idea into a global leader in the cleantech finance marketplace,” said Matt McCooe, CEO of Connecticut Innovations. “Their leadership was exemplary, unwavering in their commitment to change the world, create great jobs in Connecticut, and generate a positive outcome for CI that will be reinvested in the next wave of cleantech entrepreneurs in the state. We could not be prouder to have played a very small role in their story.”
The acquisition provides Greenworks the capital stability and springboard to further scale its business, as well as access to additional markets through Nuveen’s extensive real estate portfolio, municipal expertise, and overall strong brand. The acquisition also provides Nuveen a foothold in this nascent and rapidly growing C-PACE market, addressing an ever-increasing demand from investors for alternative ESG income.
About Connecticut Innovations
Connecticut Innovations (CI) is Connecticut’s strategic venture capital arm and the leading source of financing and ongoing support for Connecticut’s innovative, growing companies. CI provides venture capital and strategic support for early-stage technology companies, financial support for innovation and collaboration, and connections to its well-established network of partners and professionals. For more information, please visit www.ctinnovations.com.
About Greenworks Lending
Greenworks Lending, a Nuveen affiliate, is the largest provider of Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) financing in the country. Led by several of the industry’s founding policy developers and standard-setters, Greenworks Lending is a private capital provider uniquely dedicated to funding commercial real estate through C-PACE. Greenworks has provided financing to hundreds of commercial properties and is active in more than 25 states, making clean energy a smart financial decision for commercial property owners and developers nationwide. For more information, visit www.greenworkslending.com.
Nuveen, the investment manager of TIAA, offers a comprehensive range of outcome-focused investment solutions designed to secure the long-term financial goals of institutional and individual investors. Nuveen has $1.2 trillion in assets under management as of Dec. 31, 2020, and operations in 27 countries. Its investment specialists offer deep expertise across a comprehensive range of traditional and alternative investments through a wide array of vehicles and customized strategies. For more information, please visit www.nuveen.com.
Nuveen Securities, LLC, member FINRA and SIPC.