updated 5/27/2011 9:17:23 AM ET 2011-05-27T13:17:23

WASHINGTON, May 27, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Two Washington D.C. area home energy efficiency retrofit contracting companies have been selected to receive a free business performance makeover worth up to $50,000 in the Business Performance Makeover Contest, a nationwide competition organized by a consortium of organizations that promote residential energy efficiency. The Home Energy Detective of Manassas, VA and TerraLogos Energy Group of Baltimore, MD were selected from hundreds of entries across the U.S. based on their proven commitment to energy efficiency and their demonstrated ability to dramatically grow their business over the next 12 months.

Winners
From left: Susan and Peter Van Buren of TerraLogos Energy Group, Larry Zarker of BPI (contest co-host) and Troy Tanner of The Home Energy Detective.




A photo accompanying this release is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=9759

The goal of contest hosts is to showcase a model of quality management systems (QMS) that contractors across the country can emulate. Hosted by the Building Performance Institute, Inc. (BPI), the Electric & Gas Industries Association (EGIA) and Efficiency First, the contest ran from January 15 to March 30, 2011. Twenty five sponsor organizations will work with the winners for one calendar year to March 30, 2012 to provide a prize package of in-kind products and services worth up to $50,000.

"As every contractor in the home performance industry knows, you need more than technical skills to succeed – you also need business planning savvy and sales and marketing tools to reach a reluctant and often uninformed homeowner market," said Larry Zarker, CEO of BPI. "Our goal is to help contractors across this industry succeed with true added value tools, such as estimating job costs, setting hourly rates, using their website effectively, and much more."

"We've assembled an all-star line-up of sponsor experts who will be working with the contest winners to set up model business planning systems that will help them realize sustainable profits and deliver consistently high quality service to their customers," said Bruce Matulich, CEO of EGIA. "Many of these sponsors have spent years in the trenches of this industry. They bring their knowledge, their contracting business acumen, their communications expertise."

The prize package includes marketing, sales and business development consulting, local market analysis, website design and development, cash flow management consulting, training and tuition packages for energy efficiency building science courses, discounted payroll services, and much more. Click here for a complete list of items in the prize package.

"TerraLogos is thrilled – it's like getting a scholarship to go to contracting bootcamp," said Susan Van Buren of TerraLogos Home Energy. "Our experience will serve as a testing ground and provide examples for other contractors to help them grow their businesses also. There is so much room for growth in the home performance field - we don't have competitors, we have allies in our efforts to build an industry."

"This is fantastic," said Troy Tanner of The Home Energy Detective. "We're really looking forward to going through the process and learning as much as we can about ways we can improve our business and provide even more value to our customers." Meet the winners.

Contractor Update Webinars

Take a virtual tour of the winners' business makeover experience! A series of webinars will be presented by EGIA over the next year that follow the progress of contest winners. You'll hear from the two winning contractors and the sponsor experts working with them to grow their businesses and expand operations. The first, called Contractor Update Marketing Group, will be held on June 30th from 2:00 - 3:30 pm EST (11:00 - 12:30 pm PST), and will focus on marketing tools and strategies to reach customers effectively. Click here for more information and to register for this webinar.    

About the Contest Hosts:

Building Performance Institute

The Building Performance Institute, Inc., (BPI) is the nation's premier building performance credentialing, quality assurance and standards setting organization. BPI develops technical standards using an open, transparent, consensus-based process built on sound building science. BPI is approved by the American National Standards Institute, Inc. (ANSI) as an accredited developer of American National Standards. www.bpi.org

Electric & Gas Industries Association (EGIA) is a non-profit organization that serves over 2,500 installation contractors, regional distributors, product manufacturers and other trade allies delivering energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions to millions of homes and businesses. EGIA also delivers services on behalf of electric, gas, water utilities and municipalities, including financing, rebate program administration and rebate processing; contractor network management, training and certification; and sales channel development and support. www.egia.org

Efficiency First

Efficiency First is a national nonprofit trade association that unites the home performance workforce, building product manufacturers and related businesses and organizations in the escalating fight against global warming and rising energy costs. Efficiency First represents its members in public policy discussions at the state and national levels, to promote the benefits of efficiency retrofitting and to help their industry grow to meet unprecedented demand for quality residential energy improvements. www.efficiencyfirst.org

Building Performance Institute, Inc.
107 Hermes Road, Suite 110
Malta, NY 12020
Phone: (877) 274-1274
Fax: (866) 777-1274
info@bpi.org
www.bpi.org

CONTACT: Leslie McDowell
         Building Performance Institute
         lmcdowell@bpi.org
         202-223-9510

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