Innovator Profiles

David Helliwell

David Helliwell, Pulse Energy

While capitalizing on the federal government’s energy management approach to its 1 billion square feet of buildings, David Helliwell, founder of Pulse Energy, began making a list of all the positive and negative things he observed while reshaping the federal government’s policy on public works. He discovered after writing this down that he had the perfect plan for a successful company.

Helliwell’s vision to start up a company dates back to his early childhood. He has always dreamed of creating a profitable company that addresses environmental issues. That vision became a reality when he founded Pulse Energy, a rising star in the Canadian GreenTech business world.

Helliwell attributes the company’s success to its unique energy intelligence software. The software predicts buildings’ energy performance at any given time, gathers data, processes it and communicates energy performance to enable cost-effective and environmentally responsible decision-making.

With over 96% of the market share in British Columbia (B.C.) and over 50 employees in San Francisco, Toronto, and Ottawa, Pulse Energy is well positioned to expand its market beyond North America and to explore new opportunities in Asia, Europe, New Zealand and Australia. While the company’s premium energy intelligence market grows, so too does the competition.

The road has not always been easy for Helliwell. He is quick to acknowledge that he lacked sales and marketing experience before he founded the company and he made this a priority in his early stage development. “I wanted to understand the sales process, the most effective approaches to closing deals and how best to communicate with our potential customers in a way that met their needs.” Helliwell also recruited a young and high performing team that embraced his environmental vision and brought their ideas and energy to the company.

On a personal note, Helliwell has made some remarkable changes in his life to reflect his broader environmental commitment. He cycles, recycles, and conserves water and energy at home. At the corporate level, Pulse’s sustainability initiatives include curbing the company’s carbon footprint through videoconferencing as well as the prospect of offsetting the carbon emissions of the company’s business activities.

While it may be a long way from the federal government policy tables to green tech guru, Helliwell’s transformation is a welcome one. As one of Canada’s new generation of innovative entrepreneurs, Helliwell has harnessed intelligence software to help create a better world for current and future generations.