SUNNYVALE, Calif. — Serious Energy Inc., a leader in energy efficiency solutions, announced that it is a founding Financial Ally of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Better Buildings Challenge, an initiative to make America’s buildings 20 percent more efficient over the next decade, reducing energy costs for American businesses by nearly $40 billion. Serious Energy offers building upgrades without any upfront cost, with guaranteed energy bill reductions ranging from 10 percent to 30 percent.

President Obama announced the challenge, which will involve $4 billion in investments in upgrades to federal and private sector buildings over the next two years.

“Increasing the value of buildings by reducing energy cost is an economic imperative, and the Better Buildings Challenge will play a crucial role in delivering this,” said Claire Broido-Johnson, general manager of SeriousCapital, Serious Energy Inc. “Many property owners haven’t upgraded their buildings because it has been expensive and complicated to do so. We make it simple, and we take the cost barrier off the table. Under our building upgrade service, building owners receive guaranteed, immediate, and fixed reductions in energy costs. We reduce and pay the utility bills, and we identify, install, and pay for building upgrades. Building owners save money without committing any of their own capital or adding liens or surcharges to mortgages or property tax bills. And buildings become more valuable, comfortable, and efficient. For everyone.”

As a Financial Ally of the Better Buildings Challenge, Serious Energy has committed to execute $100 million worth of energy efficiency upgrades. Other allies and partners in the Better Buildings Challenge include Best Buy, USAA Real Estate, Abundant Power and the cities of Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Seattle.

According to the DOE, the energy bill for buildings is $400 billion annually — approximately 40 percent of total U.S. energy consumption. Commercial real estate alone accounts for 18 percent of all of the energy consumed in the U.S., more than cars and light trucks combined (16.5 percent). Experts generally agree that at least 30 percent of the energy used by buildings is wasted or consumed inefficiently.

“Building owners and occupants pay an energy bill, every month, forever. We reduce that bill by 10 percent to 30 percent, guaranteed and fixed for years. With no upfront capital,” said Kevin Surace, CEO of Serious Energy. “Energy efficiency upgrades do more than cut operating costs and improve net operating income,” added Surace. “They make better buildings. Study after study shows that energy efficient buildings achieve higher rental rates, score higher on occupant and tenant satisfaction surveys, and command higher valuations,” he said. “Efficiency is an investment with high returns, low risk, and now virtually no capital requirements.”

The Better Buildings Challenge builds on 14 private sector commitments announced at the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) America in June to make energy upgrades across 300 million square feet of real estate, and to invest $500 million in private sector financing in energy efficiency projects.

Since its founding in 2002, Serious Energy said its suite of solutions has improved the performance and efficiency of over 70,000 commercial, industrial, and residential buildings. The company recently began offering zero cost upgrades, and the program will roll out in 2012. For more information, visit

Publication date: 12/26/2011