The Cleantech Group

Company Overview

  • The Cleantech Group pioneered clean technology as an investment category in 2002.
  • As a global company with offices in North America, Europe, India, and China, the Cleantech Group accelerates the development and market adoption of clean technologies by providing clients with the tools they need to be successful: market-leading research and data, industry insight, access to capital, investment deal flow, news coverage, sales leads, networking events, human capital, and promotional/brand-building opportunities.


  • Cleantech’s IT group was solely responsible for managing the website which was largely hand coded using ColdFusion.
  • The IT group spent 90% of its time on website initiatives, leaving little time for other IT projects
  • At the same time, growing awareness of global climate change, resource scarcity and energy independence concerns fueled explosive growth for Cleantech, making it difficult to keep Web content current.
  • There was a huge and growing backlog of work and the website was suffering.

Business Challenge

  • Cleantech needed to decentralize ownership of the website from IT to its marketing organization, including day-to-day management of content.
  • To do this, it needed an easy-to-use content management system that non-technical users could easily embrace organization-wide.
  • Cleantech needed to better manage its online brand, and turn the website into a true marketing vehicle that could change messaging in real time to meet the needs of the community.


  • Cleantech selected the CommonSpot Web content management solution by PaperThin.
  • CommonSpot was implemented and the organization’s new website went live in less than 30 days.
  • Cleantech’s IT group took advantage of the flexibility found in ColdFusion to build forms and integrate CommonSpot with its various back end systems.
  • The organization leveraged CommonSpot’s template architecture to extend its new design to all offices globally, each with a different section of the site.
  • Cleantech then used CommonSpot’s extensive roles and permissions to enable non-technical content contributors to easily manage content on those pages specific to their individual roles.

“We always considered CommonSpot the gold standard. We went from three IT people spending 90% of our time on the website to one person spending 5%. I don’t want to even think about my life if we hadn’t bought CommonSpot. It was emphatically worth the investment.”

Mike Ewles, Managing Director of IS for The Cleantech Group


  • Cleantech completely shifted the management of Web content to marketing.
  • This shift immediately reduced IT man hours spent per week managing the website by more than 98%, improved productivity by 1800%, and reduced operational costs saving the organization more than $100,000 in the first year. This enabled IT to focus on innovation in other strategic areas.
  • By using CommonSpot, Cleantech enabled non-technical users to easily manage Web content, and the day-to-day management of the content management system. Content contributors can now create, publish and re-use content in an instant making website content fresh and current, strengthening the overall brand globally.
  • Since implementing CommonSpot, the website has become the primary marketing vehicle for Cleantech.

“It took marketing a matter of minutes to use the system. I could take someone off the street tomorrow who knew how to use a Web browser and today they could be managing content … That is really powerful."

Mike Ewles, Managing Director of IS for The Cleantech Group

Customer Information

Site Type: Internet