Innovation Spurred On by Powerhouse Partnership
Greentown Labs, in Somerville, Massachusetts, helps cleantech and energy-focused startups get the resources they need to move from prototyping products and services to pilot testing and obtaining contracts with their first customers. Veolia North America (Veolia), the world’s largest environmental services and technology company, has become a Terawatt Sponsor of the lab, providing entrepreneurs at the Lab to access the experience, advice and network of professionals, helping them solve some of the world’s biggest energy and environmental challenges.
Based three-and-a-half miles from downtown Boston, Greentown Labs offers 33,000 square feet of prototyping space as well as a machine shop and 3D printer. With more than 40 member companies on-site and a global community of cleantech and energy entrepreneurs, Greentown Labs provides the education, mentorship and guidance to help entrepreneurs rapidly grow their networks and companies. Partnership connects Boston entrepreneurs in energy and sustainability with global energy and environmental company.
“There is a lot of excitement right now with hardware incubators and accelerators,” said Laurent Auguste, Veolia’s Senior EVP Innovation & Markets, who developed the partnership and leads Veolia’s global innovation and R&D efforts. “As these entrepreneurs know, new tools are making it possible to make dramatic and exciting innovations in the energy space. We are excited to match our expertise with their fresh perspectives to better resource the world with smart energy services and technologies.”
Veolia manages a network of district energy steam pipes that deliver environmentally-friendly energy – or “Green Steam,” to the downtown Boston/Cambridge area. This innovative environmental solution utilizes advanced cogeneration technology to recapture and reuse thermal energy previously lost to the environment, reducing the Boston area’s greenhouse gas emissions by 475,000 tons annually (the equivalent of removing 80,000 cars from the roads) and reducing non-transportation carbon emissions for both cities by six percent.
“As an environmental service company that provides district energy to approximately 250 customers in the central business district of Boston and the Longwood Medical Area as well as the biotechnology corridor of Cambridge, we know what it’s like to manage the challenges of meeting a large population’s energy needs every day,” said William J. DiCroce, president and COO of Veolia North America’s Municipal & Commercial Business. “We also know the importance of innovation and fresh ideas in the environmental sector, which is why we’re looking forward to partnering with the innovative startups at Greentown Labs.”
Veolia has committed to the Terawatt Sponsor level and will embed an environmental professional at Greentown Labs to support potential opportunities to train, partner, technically and possibly financially support member entrepreneurs and their ideas. Yann Moreau, Veolia Research & Innovation Director, North America, will sit on the Greentown Labs advisory board.
“Corporations like Veolia are very important partners for Greentown Labs, not only because of the financial support they offer, but also through the resources, knowledge, expertise and investments in member companies they bring to the table. They provide the nourishment that helps our companies grow,” said Emily Reichert, CEO of Greentown Labs. “Veolia brings a very unique skillset to the entrepreneurs at Greentown Labs with their work running district energy systems and reducing carbon emissions for the Boston area. Veolia’s local expertise with the area’s municipal and commercial customers gives our cleantech entrepreneurs access to a wealth of energy experience.”
Greentown Labs Founded in 2011, Greentown Labs is a community of bold, passionate entrepreneurs creating game-changing energy technologies that transform the way we live, work, and play. Located in Somerville, MA, Greentown Labs is the largest cleantech incubator in the nation, operating a 33,000 sq. ft. facility that enables the entrepreneurs of 40 companies to solve today’s biggest energy and environmental problems. Greentown Labs hosts a constant stream of events and programs for the cleantech community and tours more than 5,000 visitors from around the world each year. Its mission is to enable a vibrant community of entrepreneurs to realize their visions by providing access to the space, resources, and funding needed to thrive.
Veolia group is the global leader in optimized resource management. With over 179,000 employees* worldwide, the Group designs and provides water, waste and energy management solutions that contribute to the sustainable development of communities and industries. Through its three complementary business activities, Veolia helps to develop access to resources, preserve available resources, and to replenish them. In 2014, the Veolia group supplied 96 million people with drinking water and 60 million people with wastewater service, produced 52 million megawatt hours of energy and converted 31 million metric tons of waste into new materials and energy. Veolia Environnement (listed on Paris Euronext: VIE) recorded consolidated revenue of $29.6 billion* in 2014.