Our clients are busy. They rarely have the time, tools or expertise to create, execute and manage a proactive energy strategy for electricity and natural gas procurement. Without exposure to the many facets of the industry, clients are often blind to the inherent risks and opportunities embedded in their procurement process as well.
That’s where we come in. 5 is the best in the business when it comes to energy procurement. We combine our deep industry knowledge and proprietary analytics to assist clients with all stages of the process. We start by performing a review of the client’s business and composing a detailed examination of their energy usage. Then we customize a set of solutions using the client’s information in conjunction with our technical and fundamental analysis of the market.
Our work involves a lot of math, engineering, trading knowledge, operations and legal expertise but here is the best part – our biggest strength is the ability to explain the strategy and execution steps at whatever level the client feels comfortable.
5 delivers impactful energy procurement strategies, proactive risk management and peace-of-mind to our clients.
A large water district engaged 5 to develop and implement a new procurement strategy. After reviewing the water district’s usage history and interviewing their operations team, 5 found an opportunity for dramatic savings.
First, 5 worked with the client to switch the operational hours of their water pumps. Rather than pumping during the weekday working hours (peak period), the client shifted operations to nighttime hours and weekends (off-peak periods). In conjunction with this change, 5 altered the product structure from fixed price to an index price for select accounts.
The new rate structure allowed the client to take advantage of the significant spread between on-peak and off-peak prices.
The client now consumes most of their electricity during off-peak periods when spot power prices are typically extremely low. The result was a 42% reduction in the water district’s effective electricity rate.
Benchmarking energy consumption is the best way to determine where an organization should focus their operational resources and energy efficiency efforts.
We first gather usage data at its smallest possible interval level to accurately map an entire year’s worth of demand by location. We are then able to plot that data against many variables including square footage, relevant production units, or customer count. The data can also be weather normalized to show comparison across multiple timeframes.
We use benchmarking to identify the weather sensitivity of a client’s load, visualize any operational anomalies and, most importantly, to build a customized risk management strategy that leverages products that best fit the client’s usage profile tolerance for risk.
Additionally, 5 offers budgeting services as a simple extension of the work already being performed throughout our client’s procurement strategy. These budgets can be produced and delivered on any frequency to fit the client’s forecasting needs.
5 conducted a benchmarking analysis for a national chain of quick serve restaurants. The goal of the study was to understand how electricity consumption varied across 4 distinct designs currently being utilized for their restaurants.
The assumption was the more up-to-date design would consume less electricity per square foot than the older models. The results were surprising. The analysis revealed the newer layout and construction had minimal impact on electricity consumption.
In fact, the most highly correlated variable to electricity usage was the volume of raw product being prepared in gas-fired cookers. It was the heat caused by more product production, not layout or design, that drove electricity costs.
Because of 5’s analysis, the client was able to redirect their energy efficiency and construction services and ultimately make smarter investments to better control energy costs.
5 adds tremendous value to the government entities and school districts we serve that, in turn, provides funding for more city services and employees along with more educators and classrooms. 5’s list of clients in this sector includes cities, townships, counties, municipal utility districts, water districts, and school districts covering a large portion of the nation’s deregulated areas.
In addition to our industry-leading services for procurement, analytics, demand-side services and energy efficiency, 5 provides the following additional value to these clients:
The City of Mansfield selected 5 after a thorough evaluation of energy advisors and brokers. 5 quickly gathered the necessary data to secure a long-term supply agreement during a significant market dip, reducing the city’s electricity costs by over $500,000 per year. 5 also identified and addressed several demand-side opportunities.
First, we helped the city to identify a power factor penalty issue, resulting in a potential savings of $12,000 per year. Then we analyzed consumption patterns at the Bud Ervin Water Treatment Plant and recommended some simple operational changes that ultimately reduced the city’s utility delivery charges by about $13,000 per year.
“We have been nothing but pleased with the service and attention 5 has provided and continues to provide us”.Jeff Price, Assistant Utility Director
City of Mansfield
Fundamental to the creation and execution of a comprehensive energy plan is the ability to interlace demand-side management throughout a client’s procurement strategy.
Demand-side management is the modification of a client’s demand for energy through various methods. The goal is to lower and control cost by reducing energy consumption during peak hours, shifting energy use to off-peak time periods or making other modifications to a client’s demand. A well-constructed plan impacts a client’s bottom-line through cost avoidance and may include financial incentives as well.
5 is actively implementing the following demand-side management techniques for our clients:
Premier Refrigerated Warehouse operates a large cold storage warehouse in Fort Worth, Texas. As a part of 5’s initial analysis of Premier’s usage history, we identified over $15,000 per year in power factor penalties, about 15% of their Oncor electric delivery charges.
With 5’s assistance, a licensed professional engineer was engaged to survey Premier’s electrical infrastructure.
The engineer recommended installing power factor correction capacitors to eliminate the penalties. 5 also assisted the client by securing a qualified electrical contractor to complete the installation.
Three years later, Premier has saved over $40,000 in electric delivery costs and is still operating at power factors above 95% with no penalties included in their delivery charges.
“5 has been key in helping us reduce operating costs through both electricity procurement and by helping us identify and eliminate power factor penalties. 5 is Premier’s trusted partner when it comes to energy.”Ron Buford, President
Premier Refrigerated Warehouse
A complete energy management program includes a thoughtful approach to energy efficiency in conjunction with any procurement and demand-side management initiatives.
By working with an advisor that covers all aspects of your energy portfolio such as 5, clients can address short-term needs while also creating a plan for the long-term financial health of their organization.
At 5 we are actively assisting clients with lighting and HVAC retrofits, control and building automation systems, infrastructure design and new construction services.
5 is also providing clients with creative funding options for energy efficiency projects including on-bill financing and Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE).
After conducting a benchmarking study for a chain of hardware stores, 5 found that one of the client’s locations used considerably more energy per square foot than any of their other stores.
5 partnered with an energy efficiency design/build engineering firm, CVAL Innovations, to conduct an on-site assessment (ASHRAE Level 2 audit) which highlighted significant energy efficiency opportunities in both lighting and air conditioning. The resulting design improvements addressed air flow deficiencies, end-of-life equipment issues, right-sized the equipment and improved lighting efficiency to deliver a 63% reduction in energy consumption.
We ensured that utility rebates were leveraged and that CVAL competitively bid the project to implement the energy conservation measures with a simple payback of less than 4 years. Our team supported the client throughout the process reviewing analysis, proposals, and recommendations.
Follow-up surveys and check-ups after 3 and 6 months confirmed that savings were being realized along with the added bonus of improved overall comfort.
5 is assisting large commercial and industrial clients as well as government entities to maximize value through distributed generation initiatives, including conventional and renewable on-site generation.
The growth of distributed resources is driven by reductions in the cost of on-site generation and storage, as well as the increasing willingness and ability of our clients to proactively generate power or reduce consumption in response to market signals.
5 has the expertise to advise our clients on this complex solution as part of our integrated approach to energy management. We are actively helping clients throughout the US and Mexico, in both regulated and deregulated areas, to analyze and execute distributed generation strategies.
Ponderosa Joint Powers Agency (PJPA) is a municipal utility district located north of Houston, Texas. As a part of a project to replace an older diesel generator, 5 worked with PJPA and identified an alternative approach that would allow them to cost effectively leverage their new generator to create revenue. 5’s recommendation of PowerSecure’s PowerBlock technology delivered a fully-compliant Tier 4 backup power solution that could be leveraged to reduce portions of PJPA electricity delivery costs and to participate in ERCOT’s Emergency Response Service grid reliability program.
PJPA’s decision to purchase a Tier 4 engine allowed them to meet their need for reliable backup power using an emissions-compliant platform that can deliver over $50,000 per year in reduced delivery costs and demand response program revenue.
“Without your help, we would have probably made an uninformed decision that would have been viewed poorly by our constituents. We now believe that PJPA will be a beacon of how to do what is right in the design, bid, build world in which we both function.”Bill Papp, Chairman
Electrical Committee of Ponderosa Joint Power Authority
Managing the timing and coordination of utilities throughout a construction project requires clear communication, well-documented processes, appropriate transfers of payment responsibility and a strict adherence to utility rules, inspections and other city requirements. At 5 we are actively helping large restaurant chains, big-box retailers, hospitals and construction firms throughout each of these critical steps.
5 engages general contractors and utilities and ensures that each stakeholder meets its objectives and completes the project on-time. The results are dramatic.
We help to lower job cost, ensure timely installation of temporary and permanent power and minimize costs and risks associated with not meeting the “substantial turnover” date.
5 was retained by a national fast food chain to handle construction services. The restaurant’s on-time open rate was only 65% prior to our involvement. The next year our team helped the client to achieve a 96% substantial turnover rate, opening 24 out of 25 restaurants on-time.
5 works alongside The Beck Group throughout the entire construction process for their clients, from initial planning to commissioning, completion and handover. Our construction services team assisted The Beck Group with many notable client projects including buildings for JP Morgan Chase, Mary Kay, Will Rogers and the Scottish Rite Hospital.
“At The Beck Group we are about creating teams from all disciplines with a singular focus of exceeding expectations on every project. We work with only the best and 5 has shown an uncanny ability to navigate the complex utility world to keep our costs low and projects on-time.“Greg Brock, Director of MEP Services
The Beck Group
For organizations with multiple locations or a high meter count, capturing utility bill data, including volume and pricing, and paying invoices can be both cumbersome and cost prohibitive.
5 assists clients with a hosted web solution that provides real-time access to data and analytics. By utilizing this service, our clients streamline the processes related to bill payment, exception handling and on-going reporting. Clients gain better visibility into their utility costs and usage which also allows 5 to help further customize energy strategies for procurement and demand-side management.
Furthermore, the experience of our team members, especially at energy suppliers, allows 5 to add value to our client’s through tariff audits and rate analysis. During routine usage analysis, we regularly identify costly errors in rate code classifications, supplier billing systems, sales tax exemptions, line loss code assignments, block-and-index settlement values and even year-round charges for seasonal Christmas lights.
5 was first selected by Accredo Packaging to create a customized block-and-index procurement strategy for their large industrial load. Through the extensive analytics that 5 performs for new clients we identified an error created by their electricity supplier’s billing system. Accredo was being overcharged because the supplier’s system was inadvertently applying both secondary and primary line loss factors to the client’s monthly bill.
5 engaged the electricity provider and the regulatory authority to correct the error and retroactively credit the client for prior billing periods. The result was an immediate cost reduction of roughly 3% and an $18,000 credit for past billing.
“At Accredo we pride ourselves on being innovative and finding solutions for our clients that others cannot. We partnered with 5 because they share the same passion to go the extra mile to create value for their clients. The money they found due to the bill error is something we never would have caught on our own and a great bonus to their service.”Rex Varn, Executive Vice President
Accredo Packaging, Inc
We are in the middle of a green energy revolution and 5 is leading the charge on behalf of our clients. The renewable energy world presents countless opportunities and 5 is equipped to understand the differences of each opportunity by region, by technology, by service provider and by the corporate mandates of our clients.
Our team has extensive experience in the world of renewable energy and our clients are utilizing this expertise in many areas including:
5 was selected by the Kenwood Country Club to assist with a host of energy service needs including analytical support for the design, development and installation of a 220KW rooftop solar array spread across several buildings. Kenwood was the first country club in the DC metro-area to complete a large rooftop solar project.
The decision to utilize 5’s services comes from our team’s deep industry knowledge and specifically the solar development experience of our Chief Strategy Officer, Jon Moore.
Prior to joining 5, Jon served as the lead developer for Maryland’s largest solar project, an approximately 29MW system located on 250 acres of state-owned land that surrounds a large correctional facility in Hagerstown.
The solar installation allowed Kenwood to take advantage of favorable federal tax incentives and a high market price for solar renewable energy credits. In addition, the solar output offset a portion of their distribution bill and reduced both their peak demand and their carbon footprint.
“When selecting an energy advisory firm, we could not find a group more qualified than 5. Jon and his team take a holistic approach to energy management and helped us to create a strategy that included procurement, risk management, and a large solar PV system in a customized approach for our club.”Stephen Smith, General Manager
Kenwood Country Club