16 July 2015
Clean Energy Finance Corporation CEO Oliver Yates is encouraging small businesses to consider how managing energy costs could transform their operations.
“Australia’s more than 2 million small and medium-sized businesses are also the nation’s largest employer group and are the backbone of our economy. Research has shown that even a one per cent improvement in Australia’s energy efficiency could boost our economy by up to $1.5 billion,” he said.
“For many small businesses, with planning, a 20 per cent energy cost saving is an achievable goal. Imagine the positive impact that kind of boost could have rolled out across our economy,” he said.
Mr Yates is discussing the changing world of finance for small business at the Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia (COSBOA) Vodafone National Small Business Summit, in Sydney on 16 July.
“Whether you’re a hairdresser, a small industrial company, a suburban grocer or an accountant, there will be ways your business can save money on energy to boost productivity,” he said.
“In many cases you aren’t just cutting your energy bills through upgrades, you are working smarter, improving your work place environments and reducing your maintenance costs.”
The CEFC is currently working with Commonwealth Bank, NAB, Firstmac, Origin and SunEdison to make finance more readily available to small businesses for renewable and energy efficient technologies. These include lighting upgrades, refrigeration upgrades, solar, air-conditioning improvements, building management systems and fleet upgrades, such as low emissions vehicles. The CEFC is also working with Origin and SunEdison to make solar PV available with no upfront costs through Power Purchase Agreements.
“Typically we’ve seen manufacturers upgrade equipment to lower energy costs by up to 30 per cent, building owners retrofit offices to cut base building energy costs by up to 45 per cent and schools and sporting clubs more than halve their lighting costs using LED lighting,” Mr Yates said. “Investing to save money makes sense.”
COSBOA’s Vodafone National Small Business Summit, in Sydney from 16 to 17 July, is expected to attract over 250 delegates discussing a range of relevant issues for Australia’s small business sector.
Mr Yates is part of a panel speaking about finance for small business from 4.50pm on 16 July. Other panellists are Mike Rich – CEO of Attache and Kathryn Bordanaro of Allbiz Finance Brokers.