IESC will primarily aid Dillon in growing its new energy transition business unit.
Founded in 2009 with offices in Toronto and Calgary, IESC specializes in energy conservation and efficiency consulting, greenhouse gas reduction strategies and integration of renewable energy production.
Dillon is an employee-owned, professional consulting firm founded in 1946 specializing in planning, management, engineering and environmental science. It has over 20 offices and more than 1,000 employees across Canada.
“Dillon already works in the environmental field and also in the facilities, the mechanical, electrical fields and where that was growing. We were seeing also our clients wanting to look at energy transition, energy management, carbon reduction, so that what we're seeing there is a kind of journey of our clients,” Dennis Heinrichs, Dillon’s director of acquisitions and integrations, told SustainableBiz.
“We also began to work with Internat. We've worked together for a couple of years on various projects, and along the way, also started (that) conversation.”
Dillon’s acquisition of Internat
Heinrichs said there were no complications to the acquisition, which was kickstarted after Dillon’s CEO Sean Hanlon began talks with IESC's CEO Livio Nichilo.
“There is anticipation for the opportunities that will develop from our industry-leading experience and expertise, paired with Dillon's exceptional reputation within the broader consulting community," Nichilo said in a statement. "The landscape of our industry is changing as the movement towards a low carbon economy, locally and internationally, rapidly accelerates.
“With this change, IESC is poised to become an integral part of the Dillon team and secure a continued prominent role in this energy transition.”
In the near term, Heinrichs explained, the plan is for Dillon staff to take on some of the administrative roles from IESC employees. There is no decision on whether or not IESC will be wholly absorbed into its new parent company, although “very soon” there will be branding changes on IESC's website acknowledging it as a division of Dillon Consulting.
Heinrichs did not reveal specifics on plans for Dillon’s further expansion, but did offer a broad outline.
“Dillon has a plan of continued growth, and that is a combination of organic growth by adding staff, and it also has a component of growth through acquisition,” he said.
“We would expect that we would be doing both in this space. So that growth could be because of either a technical expertise that we don't have today, or a geographic or market presence that’s just a little too slow to build organically, and we would do it (via) an acquisition.”
Energy transition business unit, other work
Dillon's energy transition business unit has ramped up over the past two months. Geoff Allaby, who is the unit manager, will be working with Nichilo to develop a strategy for the energy services of both companies.
“We were doing bits of it in other business units. And we thought, you know what, let's actually bring those in from our environmental management business unit and our facilities business unit,” Heinrichs said. “Let's bring those projects that clearly are a little bit more unique and are really focused on energy transition, develop the business plan for that.”
That unit offers performance reviews, energy portfolio roadmaps, energy transition planning and financing as well as baseline studies and carbon reporting. With the acquisition, these services could expand in scope, or new services could be added
“We are developing both where our employees want to work, and also where the markets are asking for our help,” Heinrichs said.
The projects IESC previously collaborated on belonged to Dillon’s facilities business unit, and IESC will continue to aid Dillon by strengthening its technical depth in the Ontario market.
“The facilities business unit typically gets further into actual engineering design and then supporting our clients in built solutions,” Heinrichs explained. “So Internat (was) often helping us in the, shall we call it the front end, whether it's energy modelling, energy efficiency frameworks, and helping in those decisions.”