One of the nation’s largest independent power producers has acquired a Chicago-based firm best known locally for its role in designing Walgreens’ “net zero” store in Evanston.
Chicago’s GI Energy is being rebranded as Endurant following its sale to New York-based LS Power, announced yesterday. LS Power operates several natural gas-fired power plants serving the Chicago market.
Endurant was founded overseas roughly 16 years ago by Tom Chadwick, who moved the firm to the U.S. after an acquisition in 2011. Originally strictly a supplier of geothermal systems, the firm has grown into a specialist in helping developers, corporations and retailers like Home Depot reach their environmental goals through systems using fuel cells, battery storage, and solar and geothermal generation.
Essentially, the company designs and builds energy systems that provide most of the electricity and heat consumed by large buildings and businesses on a site-specific basis. The use of solar power and batteries to store energy when it’s not needed enables these companies to say their operations are “carbon-free.”
The deal with LS Power will allow Endurant to accelerate its growth, particularly as clients seek to no longer own the systems Endurant designs but simply to purchase the energy from them the same way they would from a utility, Chadwick, 55, said in an interview.
“We really recognized that capital is everything in the energy business,” he said. “What we’re doing is we’re replacing the utility.”
“As we decarbonize our energy system and rely more heavily on electricity, the value of reliability and resilience is increasing,” LS Power CEO Paul Segal said in a release. “Endurant can be a part of the solution and is an excellent addition to the LS Power family of companies, further demonstrating our longstanding commitment to innovation and investment in clean energy solutions.”