Energy disrupters: more than replacing light bulbs, they're saving money and energy.

Author:Caley, Nora

R.J. Mastic launched a company called Green Office Ideas in 2007, with the goal of helping businesses buy remanufactured ink and toner cartridges, recycled paper and ENERGY STAR rated office equipment. It turned out clients were more interested in saving money than saving the planet. "Most people just cared about their energy bill," he says.

Mastic, who studied finance and entrepreneurship University of Colorado Boulder, decided to focus more on construction, an industry in which his family had a background. He shifted his concentration to energy efficiency, and worked with commercial real estate clients to retrofit their spaces. "My bleeding heart said this is the right thing to do, while my finance side said this is where the money is," he recalls.

So he launched Ecosystems, an energy service company (ESCO) in 2010 in Boulder. Ecosystems specializes in serving small businesses that own or rent commercial buildings to save money and energy, mainly with high-efficiency lighting. Ecosystems has worked on everything from hair salons to the 300,000-square-foot Denver Athletic Club, where it replaced more than 350 candelabras with more energy-efficient fixtures and high-performance court lighting.

Ecosystems also helps companies get project financing, submit forms for rebates, and buy energy efficient lighting without the markups from manufacturers reps, wholesalers and others. "We are a small distributor that also acts as a consultant and project manager and brings finance to the table," Mastic says. The 10-employee company moved to Denver this year. Other companies shaking things...

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