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Company Profile:

Serious Materials

Innovation: Making greener building materials


The company focuses on reducing the environmental impact of the building industry. Its drywall takes 80 percent less energy to make than ordinary drywall and uses manufacturing processes that emit less carbon dioxide; its windows incorporate a thin film that acts as an insulator; and it recently developed software to help property managers monitor energy usage in commercial buildings.


The economic downturn combined with billions in stimulus funding has meant a surge in investment into improving the efficiency of government and commercial buildings in order to cut costs and save energy. In 2010, Serious Materials took part in a major retrofitting of the Empire State Building by recycling the glass from existing windows in the creation of its super-insulating windows. This move alone is expected to reduce energy costs at the site by more than $400,000 per year.


In 2010 Serious Materials branched out from its core business of engineering new building materials, and launched a cloud-based software system for building owners who are looking to cut operational expenses by better managing their energy usage. The software works with existing building management systems from companies like Cisco, and because it is delivered over the Web, it doesn't require users to install any software or download updates.

Challenges and Next Steps:

Although investment in energy efficiency has been great for the company's windows business, commercial production of its drywall has been delayed due to the dearth of new construction in the United States.

Private Company: Serious Materials
Founded: 2002
Founders: Kevin Surace, Marc Porat
Funding Raised: $132 million
Key Investors: New Enterprise Associates, Foundation Capital, Mesirow Financial, Rustic Canyon, EnerTech Capital, Navitas Capital, Cheyenne Partners, VantagePoint Partners, Staenberg Ventures


Kevin Surace (CEO)

Brandon Tinianov (CTO)