MANAGING ENERGY: Bradenton start-up firm looks to help businesses, consumers save

BRADENTON — A Bradenton-based start-up company has a service both business owners and consumers are looking for in this economy: cost- savings solutions.

Advanced Energy Management Solutions, which was founded in April, is aiming to help businesses save money on their electric bills with innovative technology.

Bradenton resident Melissa Faraone founded the company with her husband Ed Faraone, a former regional director of operations for a Maryland-based energy management company, Omni.

The company’s approach is to evaluate business owners’ and homeowners’ energy usage habits and then recommend and install products that control and limit energy usage on items such as air conditioning units, refrigeration systems and lighting.

Ed and Melissa Faraone said they saw an opportunity to create and grow an energy management firm due to the Obama Administration’s push on energy efficiency.

“My wife and I realized the potential and what is out there for energy management,” Faraone said. “Because of the economy, everyone is looking to save a buck, so my wife and I started looking at how we could do this business ourselves.”

Melissa Faraone, a Realtor with Betsy Hills Real Estate in Anna Maria, is using her sales background to lead the business development side of the company.

Advanced Energy is currently in negotiations with five potential clients and Faraone hopes her networking will allow the company to grow quickly.

“I think I know just about everyone in this town,” said Faraone, who also worked as a Realtor for Michael Saunders. “I’ve sold a lot of high-end real estate and because of that I have a lot of experience and connections from working with CEOs of large companies.”

Ed Faraone has applied his background in energy management to set up the company and Jim Silva, who has worked in data communications since 1979, is the director of operations.

In setting up the business, one of the first steps for the Faraones was to secure a partnership with a distributor of energy-savings products.

“We easily wanted to be able to offer cutting-edge technology but we didn’t want to have to go to the business owner or homeowner and say this is going to take you about seven years for it to pay for itself,” Ed Faraone said.

Advanced Energy Management Solutions found their partner in Enigin, an energy saving products distributor based in the United Kingdom.

Advanced Energy orders parts such as an air conditioning energy saver, a chilled-unit energy saver and a light energy saver system from Enigin. The air conditioning energy saver, which is a sensor driven software that regulates an AC unit’s compressor to avoid inefficient over cooling, can cut energy bills by 15 to 31 percent, said Silva, the director of operations for Advanced Energy.

And, the products’ solutions for businesses and homeowners are priced based on what the company or resident will save in energy costs over a two-year period.

For example, if a client will save $30,000 a year on air conditioning costs, the energy-saving solution will be priced at about $60,000.

Silva said the company is aiming to keep consumers’ return on investment for energy management product solutions at about two years.

“Our goal is to get them cash flow positive (on their energy savings) in two years or less,” Silva said.

For more information, call (941) 209-5773.