Quimera Energy Efficiency set for growth surge with US deal
London-based Quimera Energy Efficiency designs and delivers energy efficiency and smart building solutions for hotels around the world, and has secured a seven-figure export contract in the US, according to the Department for International Trade.
The firm will now see its systems installed in all three Marriott hotels operated by the MDM Hotel Group in Miami.
To help secure its partnership with MDM Hotel Group, Quimera Energy Efficiency worked closely with International Trade Advisers (ITAs) from the Department for International Trade (DIT) in London, who helped the business make key legal contacts and meet new commercial partners in the US.
In a bid to drive further US growth, Quimera Energy Efficiency is now working with government advisers at the British Consulate in Chicago to explore a new joint venture with Hyatt Hotels in the city.
The business is also in discussions with a further 30 hotels across the US market, which could deliver up to £6 million in revenue for Quimera Energy Efficiency between 2019 and 2022.
With growing overseas prospects, particularly in the US and China, the company expects to see its total revenue increase by 200% to more than £2.6 million over the coming year, reaching £35.4 million by 2024.
Quimera Energy Efficiency currently generates 70% of its turnover from overseas sales, with customers in 12 markets overseas, including Germany, the UAE, Oman, China, India and the Dominican Republic.
In addition to its UK-operation, Quimera Energy Efficiency has established wholly owned or controlled companies operating from Dubai and Shanghai. Over the next 6 months, the business aims establish a further 2 subsidiaries in Mumbai and Atlanta.
The business boasts the global energy efficiency sector’s first revenue model based entirely on the performance of its solutions, taking a share of the energy cost saved by its partners instead of charging up-front for its services.
John Chambers, Business Development Director, Quimera, said: “The US is home to some of the world’s largest hospitality brands, and we hope that this new US contract is the first of more to come. We’ve been working with DIT since 2017, and its support in helping to source US legal and commercial partners was instrumental in making our deal with MDM happen.
Entering the United States seemed like a big step, especially considering the size of the market. DIT advisers were on hand to help develop our US operations, and have been on hand to offer advice on managing issues such as late payments from customers in other markets around the world.
Hospitality is a global industry, and our outlook has been global from the start. In addition to growing our business in the US, we’ll also be working with DIT to help build our operations in China, where $13 billion (£10.4 billion) of the $27 billion (£27.5 billion) global energy services market was spent last year.
The success of companies like ours shows that exporting isn’t just about goods, it’s services too, and I’d encourage anyone interested to make the most of the support available – the demand is out there.
We’re proud to be flying the flag for the UK overseas. With DIT’s support, Quimera Energy Efficiency is now the world leader in its field, with clients including the major hotel companies and their properties that we service around the globe.”
Parveen Thornhill, Head of London Region, Department for International Trade said: “Quimera Energy Efficiency has been quick to recognise the opportunities for rapid growth overseas. When Quimera’s dedicated ITA Jim James first started working with the business, the US was identified as one of its priority markets for growth, and this deal is a major milestone.
The US market can be a daunting one to approach for many small businesses, due to its size, level of competition and its different regulations.
To help local firms tackle export hurdles such as these, we have a network of expert ITAs who can offer firms one-to-one guidance to help them conduct essential research, identify new partners and buyers, and navigate potential barriers such as regulations and tax.
I’m encouraging anyone interested in seeing what exporting can do for them to get in touch. If a company like Quimera can find success, there’s no reason many others can’t too.”
Carbon dioxide removal revenues worth £2bn a year by 2030
Carbon dioxide removal revenues could reach £2bn a year by 2030 in the UK with costs per megatonne totalling up to £400 million, according to the National Infrastructure Commission.
Engineered greenhouse gas removals will become "a major new infrastructure sector" in the coming decades - although costs are uncertain given removal technologies are in their infancy - and revenues could match that of the UK’s water sector by 2050. The Commission’s analysis suggests engineered removals technologies need to have capacity to remove five to ten megatonnes of carbon dioxide no later than 2030, and between 40 and 100 megatonnes by 2050.
The Commission states technologies fit into two categories: extracting carbon dioxide directly out of the air; and bioenergy with carbon capture technology – processing biomass to recapture carbon dioxide absorbed as the fuel grew. In both cases, the captured CO2 is then stored permanently out of the atmosphere, typically under the seabed.
The report sets out how the engineered removal and storage of carbon dioxide offers the most realistic way to mitigate the final slice of emissions expected to remain by the 2040s from sources that don’t currently have a decarbonisation solution, like aviation and agriculture.
It stresses that the potential of these technologies is “not an excuse to delay necessary action elsewhere” and cannot replace efforts to reduce emissions from sectors like road transport or power, where removals would be a more expensive alternative.
The critical role these technologies will play in meeting climate targets means government must rapidly kick start the sector so that it becomes viable by the 2030s, according to the report, which was commissioned by government in November 2020.
Early movement by the UK to develop the expertise and capacity in greenhouse gas removal technologies could create a comparative advantage, with the prospect of other countries needing to procure the knowledge and skills the UK develops.
The Commission recommends that government should support the development of this new sector in the short term with policies that drive delivery of these technologies and create demand through obligations on polluting industries, which will over time enable a competitive market to develop. Robust independent regulation must also be put in place from the start to help build public and investor confidence.
While the burden of these costs could be shared by different parts of industries required to pay for removals or in part shared with government, the report acknowledges that, over the longer term, the aim should be to have polluting sectors pay for removals they need to reach carbon targets.
Polluting industries are likely to pass a proportion of the costs onto consumers. While those with bigger household expenditures will pay more than those on lower incomes, the report underlines that government will need to identify ways of protecting vulnerable consumers and to decide where in relevant industry supply chains the costs should fall.
Chair of the National Infrastructure Commission, Sir John Armitt, said taking steps to clean our air is something we’re going to have to get used to, just as we already manage our wastewater and household refuse.
"While engineered removals will not be everyone’s favourite device in the toolkit, they are there for the hardest jobs. And in the overall project of mitigating our impact on the planet for the sake of generations to come, we need every tool we can find," he said.
“But to get close to having the sector operating where and when we need it to, the government needs to get ahead of the game now. The adaptive approach to market building we recommend will create the best environment for emerging technologies to develop quickly and show their worth, avoiding the need for government to pick winners. We know from the dramatic fall in the cost of renewables that this approach works and we must apply the lessons learned to this novel, but necessary, technology.”
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and International Energy Agency estimate a global capacity for engineered removals of 2,000 to 16,000 megatonnes of carbon dioxide each year by 2050 will be needed in order to meet global reduction targets.
Yesterday Summit Carbon Solutions received "a strategic investment" from John Deere to advance a major CCUS project (click here). The project will accelerate decarbonisation efforts across the agriculture industry by enabling the production of low carbon ethanol, resulting in the production of more sustainable food, feed, and fuel. Summit Carbon Solutions has partnered with 31 biorefineries across the Midwest United States to capture and permanently sequester their CO2 emissions.
Cory Reed, President, Agriculture & Turf Division of John Deere, said: "Carbon neutral ethanol would have a positive impact on the environment and bolster the long-term sustainability of the agriculture industry. The work Summit Carbon Solutions is doing will be critical in delivering on these goals."
McKinsey highlights a number of CCUS methods which can drive CO2 to net zero:
- Today’s leader: Enhanced oil recovery Among CO2 uses by industry, enhanced oil recovery leads the field. It accounts for around 90 percent of all CO2 usage today
- Cementing in CO2 for the ages New processes could lock up CO2 permanently in concrete, “storing” CO2 in buildings, sidewalks, or anywhere else concrete is used
- Carbon neutral fuel for jets Technically, CO2 could be used to create virtually any type of fuel. Through a chemical reaction, CO2 captured from industry can be combined with hydrogen to create synthetic gasoline, jet fuel, and diesel
- Capturing CO2 from ambient air - anywhere Direct air capture (DAC) could push CO2 emissions into negative territory in a big way
- The biomass-energy cycle: CO2 neutral or even negative Bioenergy with carbon capture and storage relies on nature to remove CO2 from the atmosphere for use elsewhere