Michl Binderbauer, CEO of the privately funded alternative fusion developer TAE Technologies, applauds the report’s emphasis on public–private partnerships. “You are combining the strength of a DOE lab or university program with the end-product focus of the private sector,” he says, rather than the “more meandering” academic process. “A tighter adherence to schedules will help to drive efficiency in the process.”
Investments in private fusion ventures from billionaires, venture capital firms, philanthropists, and even oil and gas majors have grown in the past year. Measured by the amount of capital raised, TAE Technologies in Orange County, California, leads the pack at $750 million. That’s up by $150 million from early 2019, when named investors included the late former hedge fund manager Arthur Samberg, Charles Schwab, former Morgan Stanley CEO John Mack, venture capital firms New Enterprise Associates and Venrock, the UK’s Wellcome Trust, several sovereign funds, and Alphabet. CEO Michl Binderbauer says that list remains largely unchanged.