Francisco Torres
CEO
Veolus
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Energy Efficiency Key to Warding off Climate Change

By Pedro Alcalá | Fri, 01/28/2022 - 14:45

Q: How do you ensure optimal energy efficiency for your clients?

A: We are a Mexican company that provides energy efficiency solutions and equipment maintenance services. When we develop or take on a project, it is important that our customers achieve the savings we promised them, thus solutions include operation and maintenance services because if we do not operate and maintain the technical support equipment, it would be impossible to guarantee energy efficiency. We believe that proper engineering is the foundation of energy efficiency, as well as regular maintenance of the equipment we install or operate and maintain.

 

Q: What must customers consider in terms of cost and the requirements for a successful implementation?

A: We have seen situations where a customer’s utilities were not correctly installed to maximize efficiency. They then discover that hiring a contractor to correct the issue later leads to higher costs because the focus of the contractor is not on energy efficiency.  Some customers buy things that are too big for their premises and are not suitable for their needs. This is a learning process for the customer as well. Today, we have customers that have become experts in energy efficiency as a result of the change in mindset they have experienced from working with us. That is the most important element that we contribute to.

 

Q: What ROI will your customers see from their investment in energy-saving systems?

A: With Veolus’ energy efficiency projects, the period to see a return on investment is usually five to seven years. After that period, we invoice the customer for the equipment at MX$1 (US$0.05) because they have already paid for it with the savings that kick back to us. If, for example, we obtain 30 percent savings on their electricity invoice through our equipment, that 30 percent is divided between Veolus and our customer. Depending on the size of the investment, Veolus can receive a higher or lower portion of the savings. At the beginning of the project, customers are going to have savings without any investment. We believe it is a very competitive solution and customers will receive better engineering in terms of energy consumption and efficiency. We also provide solutions for cleaner, cheaper and more efficient energy production, like combined heat and power (CHP). If we finance the CHP projects, we are seeing a return of between 15 to 20 years. Regarding photovoltaic panels, we are seeing a return of between 8 to 12 years.

 

Q: Besides tax incentives, what else can help increase the availability of cleaner energy for corporate use?

A: The country needs to introduce a policy that eases access to cleaner energy and therefore incentivizes investment. Today, Mexico’s private and public sectors produce a very small percentage of sustainable energy compared to other countries. Therefore, more investment is needed in sustainable energy projects. This would be the only way to increase the availability of this type of energy for companies and for the general public.

 

Q: How does Veolus differentiate itself from its competition?

A: It is very simple: we provide guaranteed savings, which is rare in the Mexican market. Also, we remain with our client throughout the life of the project, supervising operational risks and Technical support equipment maintenance. We can also provide financing, which is also rare in Mexico. Finally, we count on the expertise of our technicians. We provide a complete solution for our customers that differentiates us from our competition.

 

Q: What are Veolus’ main targets in terms of growth and development for 2022?

A: It depends on what happens with the electricity reform that is under discussion. We plan to develop our business providing cleaner and cheaper energy through more efficient solutions. Regardless of what happens with the electricity reform, we also believe many opportunities will emerge related to energy efficiency. Whether the energy is produced by CFE or by a private company, if you consume fewer kilowatts, you will be saving money. Consequently, we want to continue developing that business line, while continuing our technical support equipment operation and maintenance services, which are the foundation of energy efficiency projects and solutions.

Veolus was founded by notable international players but has been a fully Mexican company since 2014, specializing in optimizing energy consumption, cogeneration, maintenance and sanitation for industrial players.

Photo by:   Veolus
Pedro Alcalá Pedro Alcalá Senior Journalist & Industry Analyst