Robert Johnsen brings to his investment banking work the unique and highly valued perspective of being both an experienced senior banker with major Wall Street firms and for the last 20 years a CEO with expertise in the co-founding, financing and management of companies in the cleantech / renewable energy industry. His banking career, at institutions including Bank of America, Lehman Brothers (VP) and what is today RBC Capital Markets (MD), was highlighted by raising over $3 billion of equity financings on behalf of clients in the energy, telecommunications, airline and retail industries and developing a new financing structure, the leveraged lease of communication satellite transponders, that led to an additional $3 billion of industry financings. His innovative secured financings led to the initial fleet procurements for two start-up airlines.
As CEO, he led five companies (two of which he co-founded as university spin-outs) in the fields of advanced biofuels and gas-to-liquids. Three were ultimately sold to strategic partners BP, Total, BASF and Lallemand and two remain active. He had an outstanding track record in raising venture and growth capital and government funding, developing strategic partnerships and technology transfers, financial planning and budgeting protocols, hiring and managing all levels of staff, identifying and validating business opportunities and formulating business strategy. Mr. Johnsen structured and secured corporate and project capital to stabilize and grow companies, expanded R&D, and developed, financed, and built testing and production facilities. He has extensive contacts with Wall Street firms and other financial institutions, particularly venture capital and private equity groups and family offices, as well as Washington law firms, DOE officials and elected officials and staff, technology leaders, the press and policy makers.
Mr. Johnsen is also the Managing Partner of RJ Projects LLC, a consulting firm focused on providing operational, financial and commercialization guidance and support to entrepreneurial companies with transformative technologies in the areas of cleantech, renewable energy, transportation, materials and resource efficiency. He is on the Board of Directors of GreenBlu, Inc., a water desalination technology company.
Mr. Johnsen received a BBA in Economics from Baruch College (City University of New York) and an MBA in Finance from New York University.