Innovative Business Models for Energy Efficiency Financing (Webinar)

28 May 2014

Many challenges can make financing for energy efficiency projects difficult or expensive to secure. Tapping the enormous potential for energy efficiency financing in the global market requires the creation of new business models that are designed to overcome the chronic roadblocks to such investment. Public and private financial institutions are now developing new models and products to capture this market opportunity.

The Clean Energy Solutions Center, in partnership with the UN Foundation, hosted this webinar-based training session on innovative business models to provide energy efficiency financing. It featured presentations by two private sector innovators, each pursuing a different strategy to open up this emerging market.

  • Bruce Schlein, Director of Corporate Sustainability, Citi, described how his firm is warehousing and aggregating unsecured consumer energy efficiency loans to sell into the secondary market.
  • Jonathan Maxwell, Founding Partner and CEO of the London-based Sustainable Development Capital LLP, described energy efficiency investment funds he is managing in the UK, Ireland and Singapore, in which modest amounts of public investment are leveraging greater amounts of private investment.

The panelists also presented new approaches to financing and recent lessons learned.

(webinar transcript)


Mark HopkinsMark Hopkins, Former Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Alliance to Save Energy

Mark Hopkins is an internationally recognized expert in energy efficiency with 40 years of experience in policy reform and program development. He is the former Executive Vice President and chief Operating Officer of the Alliance to Save Energy. His areas of expertise include building codes, appliance standards and Energy Star; building design and upgrade, government facility energy management and energy saving performance contracting; and utility regulatory reform and industrial energy productivity. In the early 1990s, Mark created the Alliance’s international program that helped to improve energy efficiency in 25 transitional and developing countries, especially in the areas of district heating, municipal energy management and in water and wastewater systems. More recently in the private sector, he developed a new clean energy business model for Lockheed Martin Corporation. He directs the UN Foundation’s efforts to incorporate strong energy efficiency commitments into international agreements and helps countries deploy energy efficiency through the UN’s Sustainable Energy for All initiative. He is a Member of the Board of Directors and Treasurer of CLASP, the Collaborative Labeling and Appliance Standards Program, the ClimateWorks international best practice hub. Mark is currently organizing a Global Partnership for Energy-Efficient Buildings.

Jonathan MaxwellJonathan Maxwell, Founding Partner and CEO of Sustainable Development Capital LLP

Jonathan is the CEO and Co-Founding Partner of Sustainable Development Capital LLP. He has completed over 45 investment vehicle transactions over the last 16 years involving investment in infrastructure, private equity, real estate and listed securities. During this time has worked on investments in Europe, the Middle East, Asia and the Americas. At SDCL, he has advised on the formation of a number of investment vehicles involving total capital raised of approximately US$600 million. He has also served as an advisor to governments, to the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative and is a director and trustee of the Institute for Sustainability in the UK. Jonathan was previously Director of Business Development for HSBC’s real estate and infrastructure investment arm, where he managed a diverse range of successful investment transactions. Jonathan graduated with a degree in Modern History from Oxford University.

Bruce SchleinBruce Schlein, Director of Corporate Sustainability, Citi

Bruce Schlein joined Citi in 2006 where he works as Director of Corporate Sustainability with Citi business and operations units to identify and develop solutions for emerging environmental and social issues and opportunities, with a focus on energy efficiency, urban climate mitigation and adaptation, and sustainable value chains. Previously, he worked as a sustainability specialist for Bechtel on petrochemical and civil projects in China and Romania, and for international development agencies including Save the Children, Catholic Relief Services in Bosnia Herzegovina and the U.S. Peace Corps in Papua New Guinea. Bruce is a graduate of Cornell University and holds a Masters in International Affairs from Johns Hopkins Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). Bruce currently teaches Corporate Social Responsibility as an adjunct professor at SAIS and NYU Stern, and serves on the board of the International Institute for Sustainable Development.