Boston Startup Helps Clients Save Money By Making Buildings More Efficient

BOSTON (CBS) – A Boston company is saving their commercial clients a lot of money by making buildings more efficient. WBZ business reporter Jeff Brown says for Renew Energy Partners, the effort is worth $40 million.

Commercial buildings are wasting a lot of money by not making an effort to become more energy efficient.

“Over 70% of commercial buildings in this country are sitting on energy savings that they’re not harvesting,” said Charlie Lord, managing partner at Renew Energy Partners.

“Run the gamut from lighting upgrades to heating and cooling upgrades, to making buildings smarter,” Lord said.

Renew pays to retrofit these buildings and the money adds up.

“We see building energy use reductions in the range of 20 to even 50 percent,” Lord said.

Why haven’t companies taken the bull by the horns already?

“Companies from all sizes typically have other priorities for their capital budget,” Lord said.

“We pay for the retrofit and then we sell the energy savings back to the company at a discount.”

The company has raised $40 million in new funding, and that opens a world of new possibilities.

“It allows us to be aggressive in going after bigger and more projects. We have a significant percentage earmarked for projects that range from hospitals to multifamily housing to manufacturing.”

And Lord says older buildings reveal bigger opportunities, but age really has nothing to do with it.

“Even a building that’s 10 or 12 years old may have significant efficiency upgrade opportunities,” he says.

The $40 million puts Renew Energy on another level.

“The size of the opportunity and the pressing need for carbon emissions reductions, we’d like to be doing 50 to a 100 million dollars’ worth of projects a year,” Lord said.

Twenty five percent of that money is already spoken for on deals in Massachusetts and New York.

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