With the rise of condominiums and multi-family homes in Toronto, there has been a rise in the associated carbon emissions. This week, we spoke to Brad Pilgrim, CEO and co-founder of Parity Inc., which is a Toronto-based property tech company using AI to eliminate energy waste in multi-residential buildings across the city.
What is your business called and what does it do?
Parity Inc. is a Canadian property technology company that uses artificial intelligence (AI)-based, building automation software to reduce carbon emissions from multi-residential buildings. This proprietary HVAC control and analytics platform assesses energy usage and finds efficiencies to lower a buildings’ energy use while still achieving resident comfort.
Parity’s greater mission is to help property managers and homeowners improve their residential energy efficiency to preserve and promote sustainable urban environments.
Parity’s team works together with mechanical contractors and property management companies and condo boards to install smart energy management platforms to existing equipment to reduce energy waste and operational costs between 30-50 per cent.
It does this by matching supply and demand of gas, electricity and water using real-time data and automation for dynamic control of mechanical HVAC equipment, automatically balancing the supply of comfort produced by a building’s mechanical system with the demand for comfort by residents.
What made you want to do this work?
I worked in solar energy for several years. I had the opportunity to learn from entrepreneurs and environmental allies that I admired. I educated myself about energy generation, centralized distribution and grid systems and how they work to balance themselves.
So, it got me thinking, how could we work within the energy system and develop a solution that was cost effective, without returning waste into the feedback loop of energy production and management?
What really pushed me to pursue Parity, all started back when I lived in a condo. That year, the board announced our condo fees would increase by 18 per cent. I discovered almost 40 per cent of the budget was made up of energy expenses including electricity, gas and water.
It was a staggering amount of money to feed an unsustainable system. It only made sense to look for solutions to consume energy in smarter ways. And the missing piece of the puzzle for me was Parity.
Today we have built an exceptional team of people that want to challenge – even obliterate –the status quo and find solutions for people in our community so they can lead increasingly sustainable urban lifestyles.
What problem does this solve?
From a Canada-wide perspective, we are committed (under the Paris Agreement) to reduce our GHG emissions by 30% below 2005 levels by 2030. Parity understands that large residential buildings can reach these targets sooner with our solution.
For this reason, we believe that Parity is a critical piece of the larger sustainability puzzle. There is no silver bullet to addressing climate change. By showing what is possible in residential buildings and by accessing existing home grown smart technologies we can help all buildings eliminate energy waste.
Regionally, Parity lowers the carbon footprint of the Toronto region by preventing approximately 5,075,000 lbs of CO2 emissions (carbon sequestered by 3,021 acres of forest in one year) to date.
From a financial perspective, we are improving the opportunity for viable and affordable cost of living. Every resident living in buildings equipped with Parity has seen the operating costs of their buildings reduced significantly (10-15%) and this has translated into more financially viable condominium corporations and owned apartment buildings.
Who are your clientele/demographics?
We focus on working with property managers in residential high-rise condos in urban centres. We work with Canadian property management companies, condo boards and associations, and have recently extended our portfolio with cross border partnerships in the United States.
Condo boards and associations who are looking to reduce their building’s carbon footprint and operational cost to free up capital for other cash reserves, projects and renovations benefit the most from our product and service.
How does your business make money? How does it work?
We are a SaaS business (a company that hosts an application and makes it available to customers over the internet). We measure and collect data through the machinery we control for our customers and the result is measured energy and gas consumption which we quantify into cost savings. We charge a monthly fee to accomplish this for a building and this is known as efficiency as a service.
Where in Toronto can we find your profession?
Contact your condo board to request a free assessment from our team or visit our website.
What is the best question a prospective customer could ask a member of your profession when comparing services? Give the answer as well.
Why isn’t everyone doing this? The answer is – they should be and it’s only been a few years since the right technology has been economically viable to accomplish this to add value back to the consumer.
What is the best part about what you do? What is the worst part?
Helping customers solve real problems that otherwise cannot be solved, and building a passionate and customer focused team to deliver this message and product to market.
What is another Toronto business that you love?