October 15, 2007

New award honours Canadian environmental technology companies

Smartcool Systems has been named an inaugural winner of the Deloitte Technology Green 15 Award, a new award honouring companies that have achieved major breakthroughs in the field of green technology by creating intellectual property (IP) and technology that reduce society's environmental impact.

Based in Vancouver, Smartcool Systems specializes in energy conservation technologies that help commercial and retail businesses cut their energy use and costs. The company's centrepiece technology is the Energy Saving Module (ESM)(tm), developed, manufactured, owned and distributed by its wholly-owned subsidiary, Smartcool International.

This green technology works in conjunction with existing air conditioning and refrigeration compressors to reduce their electricity consumption (kWh) and maximum demand (kW), rather than replacing existing equipment. In a process called "compressor optimization," the ESM helps ensure that compressors work at maximum efficiency while maintaining preset temperature levels and without causing over-cycling. As a result, This process can reduce compressor runtime by more than 30% and electricity consumption and demand by up to 20%.

Also honoured with this new environmental technology award was Azure Dynamics, a company specializing in the development and production of hybrid electric and electric components and powertrain systems for commercial vehicles. Azure has been strategically targeting the commercial delivery vehicle and shuttle bus markets and is currently working internationally with various partners and customers.

Originally based in Mississauga, Ontario, the company has just relocated its corporate headquarters to Oak Park, Michigan, in the greater Detroit area, in order to be closer to Ford and other major automotive industry partners. Azure has indicated that it intends to keep most of its hybrid and hybrid-electric systems engineering and technology development team at its facility in Vancouver, BC, along with its electric drive technology business unit and facility in Boston, Massachusetts. The company will also maintain a service facility in Mississauga, to support major customers in the greater Toronto area.

"The Deloitte Technology Green 15 awards were created because much of the popular focus on environmental solutions often rests on more visible manifestations like wind farms, solar farms and ethanol production facilities," said John Ruffolo of Deloitte's technology, media and telecommunications industry group. Recognition of other, less conspicuous environmental technology developments "is raising awareness of the innovative, powerful technologies invented here in Canada that work behind the scenes to enable the green applications we benefit from today," he added.

To qualify for a Deloitte Technology Green 15 Award, candidates must be headquartered in Canada and devote a significant portion of their operating revenues to creating proprietary technology and/or intellectual property. Candidate companies are judged on technology solutions that deliver a significant environmental impact and a compelling return for their clients.

In addition to Smartcool Systems and Azure Dynamics, the inaugural winners include: 6N Silicon, Distech Controls, EnviroTower, GEEP, Optimal Technologies, Plutonic Power Corporation, QuestAir Technologies, Regen Energy, Sempa Power Systems, Sustainable Energy, VRB Power Systems, Westport Innovations and Xantrex Technologies.

The Deloitte Technology Green 15 Awards are the latest addition to the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 Awards, now marking their tenth anniversary. This program honours business growth, innovation and entrepreneurship, with awards presented in four categories: the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 Ranking; Companies-to-Watch Awards (honouring early-stage Canadian technology companies in business less than five years); Leadership Awards (Deloitte Technology Fast 50-ranked companies that demonstrate leadership in each of the four industry subcategories of emerging technologies, hardware, software, and telecommunications); and the new Deloitte Technology Green 15 Awards. Program sponsors include Deloitte, Gowlings, GrowthWorks, CIBC World Markets, Stonewood Group, Behr & Associates, and CATAAlliance. For further information, call 1-888-6FAST50.

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