CATEGORY: NEW HOMES PARTICIPANT OF THE YEAR
Reid's Heritage Homes
As one of the premier homebuilders in southwestern Ontario, Reid's Heritage Homes has created a number of award-winning communities. Now the company's commitment to design excellence, quality construction, meticulous craftsmanship and environmental integrity has earned it a new distinction - the first builder in Canada to receive an ENERGY STAR for New Homes Recognition Award.
Reid's Heritage Homes has truly been a trailblazer for ENERGY STAR qualified homes. The organization is proud to claim it is the first builder in southwestern Ontario to build communities of ENERGY STAR qualified homes and the first to label ENERGY STAR qualified homes in communities in the tri-cities region of Guelph, Kitchener and Cambridge as well as in Georgian Bay and Bruce Peninsula. ENERGY STAR qualified homes are standard for single detached Reid's Heritage Homes in many cities in Ontario. Reid's Heritage Homes and its partners have now certified more than 2000 ENERGY STAR qualified homes, all of which proudly display a plaque bearing the ENERGY STAR symbol by the front doorway.
Training has been a cornerstone of the company's success in building and marketing ENERGY STAR qualified homes. Reid's Heritage Homes requires all construction staff, major trades/suppliers and sales associates to attend at least one training session per year on ENERGY STAR for New Homes building science. Sales associates are also trained to communicate the benefits of ENERGY STAR qualified homes to clients.
Reid's Heritage Homes has worked hard to overcome market barriers to ENERGY STAR homes, most notably creating awareness among homebuyers, real estate professionals and local building officials. The company makes good use of the ENERGY STAR symbol on handouts for homebuyers, as well as in print advertisements and on site directional signage and billboards. Information about ENERGY STAR and green building practices is also available on the company's Web site.
To showcase ENERGY STAR for New Homes' features to potential homebuyers, Reid's Heritage Homes constructed five high-performance model homes in select communities. In addition to supporting sales efforts, the models were used for learning experiences by local schools and universities.
Andy Oding of Reid's Heritage Homes is involved in the integration and evolution of ENERGY STAR for New Homes in the marketplace. He chairs a technical committee of the Ontario Home Builders' Association (OHBA) and is a member of Natural Resources Canada's ENERGY STAR for New Homes next-generation standards committee.
In addition, Reid's Heritage Homes played a lead role in creating a 2011-12 working group with representatives from the Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, Ontario Building Code officials and the OHBA. This work led to formal recognition of the ENERGY STAR for New Homes' technical specifications as being compliant with the new Ontario Building Code, which has made the application process for building permits easier for all ENERGY STAR builders in the province.
This fall, Reid's Heritage Homes will launch two projects wherein the homes will comply with the 2012 ENERGY STAR for New Homes standards and is aiming for all of its homes to meet these new standards by mid-2013.
CATEGORY: MANUFACTURER OF THE YEAR
Whirlpool Canada LP
Whirlpool Canada celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2011 and marked the occasion by continuing to introduce innovative products that help consumers save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Whirlpool set a company milestone for ENERGY STAR qualified major household appliances manufactured for Canada last year. It is no wonder that Whirlpool Canada has earned the ENERGY STAR award as Manufacturer of the Year for the seventh time in 10 years.
Whirlpool manufactures and markets more than 470 ENERGY STAR qualified major appliances for the American and Canadian markets - more than any other appliance manufacturer. Its brands include Jenn-Air, KitchenAid, Whirlpool, Maytag, Inglis and Amana. The company continued to set new records for overall shipments of ENERGY STAR qualified refrigerators and clothes washers in 2011.
Among notable product launches in 2011, Whirlpool introduced three new ENERGY STAR qualified platforms, all with advanced energy-saving features, which meet the Tier 3 high efficiency criteria set by the Consortium for Energy Efficiency. The company also introduced a new premium line of top-mount refrigerators, with more than three quarters of the models qualifying for the ENERGY STAR symbol.
Taking advantage of Canadians' passion for hockey, Whirlpool's Maytag brand delivered an award-winning advertising campaign during the "Hockey Night in Canada" broadcasts of the 2011 Stanley Cup playoffs. The campaign delivered unprecedented levels of impressions and sales of the Maytag® MaximaTM clothes washer featured in the advertisements.
Also in 2011, Whirlpool's Inglis brand became the exclusive supplier of major household appliances to Canadian Tire Corporation. ENERGY STAR qualified products were highlighted in Canadian Tire flyers that were distributed to 11 million households each week.
In another breakthrough, Whirlpool brand committed to a full-time social media presence, including energy savings tips on Facebook. By the end of the year, the company's Facebook page reached more than 65 000 users monthly - a number that is growing. Facebook was also integrated for the first time into Whirlpool's Great Green Challenge contest, allowing Canadians to interact with families discovering new ways to conserve.
Whirlpool achieved double-digit increases in the number of sales associates trained in-store and with event-based training, with up to 80 percent of the training content dedicated to ENERGY STAR qualified products.
In addition to seven Manufacturer of the Year awards, Whirlpool Canada was recognized as Participant of the Year in 2008 and for Sustained Excellence in 2007.
CATEGORY: MANUFACTURER OF THE YEAR - WINDOWS, DOORS AND SKYLIGHTS
JELD-WEN of Canada
Over the past ten years, JELD-WEN of Canada has established itself as a leader in the Canadian window and door industry. The company's commitment to manufacturing excellence and to promoting and strengthening the ENERGY STAR brand in Canada has earned JELD-WEN this year's award as ENERGY STAR Manufacturer of the Year - Fenestration Products.
JELD-WEN fenestration products are sold at more than 2000 retail outlets in Canada and directly to more than 500 home builders. To ensure that energy-efficient windows and doors are affordable for all consumers, the company's products are classified into three categories: Good, Better and Best. Products in all three categories meet the strict ENERGY STAR criteria for fenestration products.
The company uses a wide range of media to reach consumers, including television commercials, print advertising and the Internet. As part of its ongoing efforts to raise awareness about energy efficiency and the benefits of purchasing ENERGY STAR qualified products, JELD-WEN established a strong social media presence in 2011 with more than 17 000 Facebook fans and Twitter followers and 30 000 readers of a company blog on energy efficiency.
JELD-WEN maintains three Web sites to provide information about its products to consumers. It provides in-depth training for retail sales associates and has developed a Web site exclusively for retailers and their staff to ensure consistency of the brand across Canada and to keep retailers informed of developments.
JELD-WEN ensures that the ENERGY STAR symbol is displayed prominently on all product packaging, purchase orders and bills, as well as on brochures and other promotional materials aimed at consumers.
JELD-WEN strives to continuously improve manufacturing practices and processes in its five Canadian plants. Employees are encouraged to share ideas on potential improvements and best practices, and the company never hesitates to implement new measures that can increase energy efficiency or reduce waste.
The company's efforts are clearly paying off, as production of ENERGY STAR qualified products jumped by 10 percent in 2011. More than 700 000 ENERGY STAR qualified units were sold by JELD-WEN that year, representing 90 percent of all products distributed from the company's Canadian plants. All product lines are available as ENERGY STAR qualified, and sales of products for the renovation market are now 100 percent ENERGY STAR qualified.
JELD-WEN of Canada has won three previous ENERGY STAR Recognition Awards - for Promotional Campaign of the Year, Participant of the Year and Sustained Excellence.
CATEGORY: MANUFACTURER OF THE YEAR - COMMERCIAL PRODUCTS
HABCO Beverage Systems Inc.
Backed by 60 years of experience and technical knowledge and guided by an overarching commitment to environmental sustainability, HABCO is committed to manufacturing energy-efficient commercial refrigeration products of the highest quality. The company's focus on continuous innovation and improvement has earned HABCO its second consecutive award as ENERGY STAR Manufacturer of the Year in the Commercial Products category.
The HABCO product line is now 77 percent ENERGY STAR qualified. Over the past year, the company has undertaken intensive research and development of all remaining products, with the goal of having the remainder of its product line ENERGY STAR qualified by mid-2012.
HABCO endeavours to ensure rapid and maximum visibility of the ENERGY STAR symbol on qualified products as well as in product literature, on the company's Web site, in flyer advertising and on exhibit materials for industry trade shows. HABCO's installation, safety and instruction manuals also prominently display the ENERGY STAR symbol, as do product sheets used in point-of-purchase displays.
The company maintains a comprehensive database that allows staff to quickly and easily access energy efficiency information on individual products. HABCO also communicates electronically with dealers, distributors, consultants, product specifiers and clients when new ENERGY STAR qualified products become available. Listings of models that qualify for incentives from BC Hydro and Hydro-Québec are widely distributed in the respective provinces.
HABCO's technological developments include the Cassette® reach-in refrigeration, Free'n'Clear® condenser coil and new HybriColdTM refrigeration system, and last year, the company began to incorporate the Free'n'Clear® condenser coil into its Cassette®-equipped models. HABCO also launched a proprietary LED lighting system designed exclusively for reach-in refrigeration cabinets, with the goal of incorporating the system as a standard feature in all refrigerators and freezers in 2012.
HABCO products are readily available in the Canadian market through food-service dealers, refrigeration wholesalers, scientific dealers, retail store supply dealers, vending wholesalers, vending dealers, food-service brokers, beverage companies and other supply outlets.
HABCO engineering and marketing staff participates actively in ENERGY STAR stakeholder meetings hosted by NRCan and works closely with food service, beverage and other channel companies to develop innovative designs that meet their needs while also complying with ENERGY STAR qualification criteria.
HABCO proudly displays banners at its manufacturing facility in Toronto, trumpeting the company's award as 2011 ENERGY STAR Manufacturer of the Year - Commercial Products. It looks like HABCO will now need to make room for another set of banners!
CATEGORY: RETAILER OF THE YEAR
Sears Canada Inc.
Building on its commitment to become the number one destination for energy-efficient products and the first place Canadians think of when they want to reduce their utility bills, Sears Canada set an aggressive new sustainability goal in 2011: to help Canadians cut their carbon footprint in half. Increasing the availability, accessibility and affordability of ENERGY STAR qualified products is a key part of the company's strategy for achieving this goal, earning Sears its fifth consecutive award as ENERGY STAR Retailer of the Year.
Sears markets more than 3500 ENERGY STAR qualified products to consumers across Canada and continues to increase the percentage of merchandise that meets the ENERGY STAR criteria. In 2011, 100 percent of windows and oil-fired boilers, more than 95 percent of dishwashers, televisions, home theatres, dehumidifiers and tankless hot water heaters, and more than 80 percent of refrigerators, clothes washers and ductless heat pumps sold by Sears were ENERGY STAR qualified. In the lighting category, Sears no longer restocks incandescent or halogen light bulbs in its stores, thus encouraging consumers to purchase energy-efficient alternatives.
The ENERGY STAR label is featured widely in the company's merchandising programs. Sears achieved more than 3 billion impressions of the ENERGY STAR symbol in sales flyers in 2011, as well as more than 500 million impressions in its catalogues. The ENERGY STAR symbol is also prominently displayed in-store, and Sears regularly partners with utilities and other organizations to encourage consumers to select ENERGY STAR qualified products.
Thanks to the company's comprehensive distribution channels, product accessibility continues to be a strong point for Sears. A full 90 percent of Canadians live within a 20-minute drive of a Sears store or catalogue merchandise pick-up location. The company's catalogues are sent to 3 million homes in all provinces and territories, and Sears.ca continues to be one of the most transacted Web sites in Canada.
Affordability is another strength of Sears. The company's Price Protection Plus program matches any competitor's advertised price on identical items within 60 days of purchase. Sears provides a wide range of financing options to customers, including up to 36 months interest-free. The company also offers bulk pricing to lower the cost of ENERGY STAR qualified appliances for low-income programs and remote communities, as well as new home developers.
Sears' commitment to energy efficiency extends to its internal operations. The company is completing the retrofit from incandescent spotlights to LEDs in its stores, with anticipated energy savings of 20 MWh annually. All photocopiers, computers and data centre components used by Sears are ENERGY STAR qualified where applicable.
In addition to its numerous Retailer of the Year awards, Sears Canada was named Participant of the Year in 2005 and received the ENERGY STAR Award for Sustained Excellence in 2011.
CATEGORY: UTILITY OF THE YEAR - PROVINCIAL
Since 2003, Hydro-Québec has implemented a broad range of programs aimed at increasing consumer awareness about energy efficiency and boosting market demand for ENERGY STAR qualified products. The utility's ambitious plans to continually improve energy efficiency across the province continued to produce strong results in 2011, earning Hydro-Québec its fifth award as provincial Utility of the Year.
Hydro-Québec works with a wide network of partners to drive market transformation. In 2011, the utility recorded a 28 percent increase in the number of retail and manufacturing partners, a 26 percent increase in retail outlets involved in the utility's ENERGY STAR programs and a 165 percent increase in manufacturing partners from the doors and windows sector.
Last year, the utility shifted its focus from creating general awareness of ENERGY STAR qualified products toward taking more targeted actions designed to stimulate consumer interest in specific product features or characteristics. Four categories of ENERGY STAR qualified products received particular attention in 2011: lighting, televisions, doors and windows, and appliances.
Hydro-Québec continued to offer rebates for the purchase of ENERGY STAR qualified light bulbs and luminaires. Consumers could claim a mail-in rebate of up to $25 for the purchase of ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs and $15 for qualified luminaires to a maximum of $225, or 15 units.
A separate program designed to encourage consumers to purchase ENERGY STAR qualified televisions also continued to grow, with 11 retail partners representing 80 percent of the market having joined this initiative since its launch in 2010. Hydro-Québec distributed campaign promotional materials to more than 450 retail outlets and provided ENERGY STAR training for sales staff. A Web-based contest educated consumers about the advantages of buying an ENERGY STAR qualified television, with a home theatre system as the prize. Nearly 60 percent of people exposed to the campaign who actually bought a television indicated that their purchase decision was influenced by the campaign.
Hydro-Québec's ENERGY STAR doors and windows program was extended for another year. Across the province, 88 percent of manufacturers of residential windows and doors now offer ENERGY STAR qualified products. Hydro-Québec continued to raise awareness about ENERGY STAR qualified fenestration products by placing advertising and advertorials in major newspapers, as well as articles in the utility's HydroContact newsletter, which is distributed to more than 2.8 million residential clients across the province.
A new program launched in 2011 offered low-income households the opportunity to save energy and money by replacing inefficient refrigerators with ENERGY STAR qualified models, with the help of a subsidy from the utility. Initially deployed in five major regions, the program resulted in the replacement of 3825 old refrigerators and will be expanded to new regions in 2012. Hydro-Québec also continued to offer rebates for the purchase of ENERGY STAR qualified appliances in Nunavik.
Its commitment to ENERGY STAR and energy efficiency, successful partnerships and superior promotional campaigns has contributed to Hydro-Québec's fifth Utility of the Year - Provincial award.
CATEGORY: UTILITY OF THE YEAR - REGIONAL
FortisBC delivers energy to more than a million customers in more than 135 communities in British Columbia. Through its PowerSense programs, the utility helps customers conserve energy and save money by providing financial incentives, information and advice on energy efficiency and ENERGY STAR qualified products, including appliances, lighting, windows and doors, and consumer electronics. FortisBC has earned this year's award as ENERGY STAR Utility of the Year - Regional.
The PowerSense Laundry Campaign in 2011 used a community-based social marketing approach to encourage its customers to use laundry lines rather than clothes dryers, which use more energy than any other appliance in a typical home, and to select ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washers. The utility distributed 10 000 free laundry lines to customers throughout its service area at 51 events in 32 communities from June to August, and recipients were asked to sign a commitment to install and use the line for a minimum period. Direct distribution provided an opportunity for FortisBC to inform its customers about the benefits of ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washers and a $75 PowerSense rebate for Tier 3 qualified models. The strategy was clearly effective; FortisBC customers purchased 918 Tier 3 ENERGY STAR qualified washers during the program - an increase of almost 300 percent over the same period in 2010. Recently, rebates have also been introduced for ENERGY STAR qualified dishwashers, refrigerators and freezers.
In the fall of 2011, FortisBC collaborated with a number of retail chains in southern B.C. to implement a rebate program for ENERGY STAR qualified light bulbs. Both automatic and mail-in rebates were offered for 30 percent of the cost of LEDs and 50 percent of the cost of CFLs. In November 2011, the utility held a light bulb and holiday light exchange as part of the Rossland Energy Diet. Promoting ENERGY STAR qualified products, FortisBC encouraged customers to exchange five incandescent light bulbs for CFLs and two strings of incandescent light strings for LED strings.
FortisBC customers were offered a rebate for ENERGY STAR qualified windows, and exterior and patio doors that were purchased from January to December. Homeowners who were renovating homes heated with electricity were eligible for a rebate up to $2.50 per square foot, which would be credited to their electricity bill.
Finally, the utility competently uses its Web site, particularly the Media Centre and PowerSense sections, to provide energy savings advice and to promote ENERGY STAR qualified products, such as CFLs and luminaires, and consumer electronics.
This is FortisBC's first ENERGY STAR Recognition Award.
CATEGORY: PROMOTIONAL CAMPAIGN OF THE YEAR
Hydro-Québec's effort to transform the residential lighting market took a new direction in 2011 with the launch of an innovative marketing campaign that has enabled the utility to claim its fourth award for ENERGY STAR Promotional Campaign of the Year.
While past campaigns have focused primarily on raising awareness about the energy efficiency and environmental benefits of ENERGY STAR qualified products, Hydro-Québec changed its approach in 2011 by promoting other characteristics and benefits of qualified CFLs and luminaires. Under the tag line "A CFL for every atmosphere," CFLs were promoted as a good lighting option for all rooms in the house. As well, for the first time, the campaign specifically targeted women through placement of advertisements and inserts in selected home decor and fashion magazines.
Separate campaigns were launched in both the spring and fall of 2011, featuring in-store events, print advertisements and headlines, and big box ads on selected Web sites (including renovation and decoration sites). A promotional insert with a rebate coupon was placed in two specialty magazines (décormag and Coup de pouce). Consumers could claim a mail-in rebate of up to $25 for the purchase of ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs and $15 for qualified luminaires. By the end of the year, the utility had issued rebates for close to 130 000 CFLs and 110 000 fixtures, an increase of 65 percent over the previous year. An article about the campaign was published in the May and June editions of the utility's HydroContact newsletter, and advertisements were placed on Cyberpresse.ca, the Web site of La Presse newspaper.
In the fall, a mass-market poster campaign was also deployed, primarily in the metropolitan Montréal area, to promote the wide variety of ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs available in the market. More than 1000 posters were displayed on subway cars, trains and bus shelters, and 55 back-lit posters were used in subway and train stations.
Hydro-Québec also joined forces with three major retail partners - RONA, Réno-Dépôt and Canac - to deliver an in-store promotional event designed to increase both store traffic and sales of energy-efficient lights. For every purchase of an ENERGY STAR qualified CFL valued at $10 or more, the utility gave customers a free ENERGY STAR qualified CFL and a mail-in rebate coupon. During these events, Réno-Dépôt experienced a 58 percent increase in sales of ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs, while sales of qualified CFLs were up by 39 percent at Rona and 16 percent at Canac.
Half of the Quebec residents exposed to the 2011 lighting campaign later indicated that they had purchased an ENERGY STAR qualified CFL in the past six months, and almost 90 percent said they planned to purchase one. Market transformation is also evident in the ever-increasing availability of energy-efficient lighting across the province. Since the spring of 2008, the availability of ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs in stores operated by Hydro-Québec's retail partners has increased by 115 percent, and the availability of qualified luminaires is 15 times greater.
Hydro-Québec has now won 11 ENERGY STAR Recognition Awards in four separate categories: Utility of the Year - Provincial (five times), Promotional Campaign (four times), Sustained Excellence and Collaborative Initiative.
CATEGORY: PARTICIPANT OF THE YEAR
All Weather Windows Ltd.
The ENERGY STAR Participant of the Year award is traditionally presented to a company or organization that has integrated ENERGY STAR into all aspects of its operations. All Weather Windows certainly fits the bill. From the design stage to installation and at every point in between, All Weather Windows takes every opportunity to promote the benefits of energy efficiency and build the ENERGY STAR brand. Experience has shown that consumers actively seek out ENERGY STAR qualified products, and All Weather Windows is positioned to deliver.
All Weather Windows offered more than 1600 ENERGY STAR qualified products to consumers in 2011, representing more than 95 percent of its product line. Distributed through more than 900 retail locations and more than 500 builders and contractors across Canada, shipments of ENERGY STAR qualified windows and doors exceeded 400 000 units last year.
With more than 60 000 unique page views per month, the company's Web site is a great resource for people looking for information about ENERGY STAR. The site's Energy Saver Calculator helps consumers determine their annual cost savings and greenhouse gas reductions from upgrading to ENERGY STAR qualified units. The company also established a social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and other sites in 2011.
In addition to appearing on all qualified products shipped by All Weather Windows, the ENERGY STAR symbol is used extensively in the our style catalogue, a key marketing tool for the company. In 2011, more than 60 000 printed catalogues were distributed to consumers, and thousands more were downloaded from the Web site. The All Weather Windows fleet of delivery trucks also proudly displays the ENERGY STAR symbol.
A national print advertising campaign featuring the ENERGY STAR symbol reached more than 5.3 million people across Canada in 2011. Two major in-store promotions were delivered in collaboration with dealers, and All Weather Windows distributed 400 000 direct mail pieces promoting ENERGY STAR qualified products to homes in Calgary and Edmonton.
ENERGY STAR windows and doors are featured in retail display units provided by All Weather Windows, with special cutaway sections that show the technology behind the products. In 2011, more than 300 major home improvement stores in Canada featured these units.
More than 200 dealers and contractors attended "All Weather Windows University" last year, where they received two days of intensive training about the company's products, marketing programs, quoting system and commitment to ENERGY STAR. The company also trained other installers using ENERGY STAR content.
This is All Weather Windows' third ENERGY STAR Recognition Award. The company was named ENERGY STAR Manufacturer of the Year in the Windows, Doors and Skylights category in 2010 and 2011.
CATEGORY: ADVOCATE OF THE YEAR - MULTIPLE PRODUCTS
Toronto Community Housing
Toronto Community Housing (TCH) is Canada's largest social housing provider and the biggest landlord in the Greater Toronto Area, with more than 58 300 housing units in its portfolio. With electricity costs for these units forecast to increase by 45 percent from 2011 to 2015, implementing energy-saving projects is an ongoing priority for the organization. Programs to replace inefficient air-conditioning units and lighting with ENERGY STAR qualified products have earned TCH the 2011 award for Advocate of the Year - Multiple Products.
The two programs were undertaken by TCH's Smart Buildings & Energy Management unit. The key mandate of this team of energy management professionals is to identify, implement and manage energy-saving projects that are financially sound and help reduce the organization's greenhouse gas emissions. Purchasing ENERGY STAR qualified products is already a standard procurement practice for the unit, and implementation of both programs will continue in 2012.
In 2011, TCH began the process of replacing inefficient window air conditioners, some of them 20 years old, with ENERGY STAR qualified units. A total of 332 air conditioners were replaced last year, resulting in annual energy savings of close to 140 000 kWh and cost savings of almost $14,000 for tenants.
As part of its Building Tune-Up program, TCH also installed close to 44 000 ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs in its buildings in 2011. The program runs in 35 TCH buildings across the Greater Toronto Area and aims to save about $850,000 in utility costs annually. Other TCH initiatives under this program include sealing air leaks in building envelopes and replacing old faucets and toilets with water-efficient units.
Throughout 2011, TCH also delivered presentations to tenants on building-specific energy efficiency and renewable energy programs. More than 2000 individuals became acquainted with the ENERGY STAR symbol through these sessions. A marketing campaign was also implemented that included posters representing the multilingual character of its tenants.
TCH was recognized in 2011 by the Association of Marketing & Communication Professionals (AMCP) with a Communitas Award for leadership in energy management and sustainability. The Communitas Awards honour companies, organizations and individuals who are committed to helping the less fortunate and are changing the way they do business to benefit their employees, communities and the environment.
This is Toronto Community Housing's second ENERGY STAR Recognition Award. TCH was also named Advocate of the Year - Multiple Products in 2006.
CATEGORY: ADVOCATE OF THE YEAR - SPECIFIC PRODUCT
Vinyl Window Designs Ltd.
For the seventh year in a row, the majority of window dealers that became ENERGY STAR Participants are those that stock qualified products manufactured by Vinyl Window Designs Ltd. The secret to this success is the company's unique dealer-centred marketing program - an innovative approach to co-branding that has aided Vinyl Window Designs in earning this year's ENERGY STAR Award for Advocate of the Year - Specific Product.
Based in Woodbridge, Ontario, Vinyl Window Designs has gone to great lengths to help its dealer network sell energy-efficient products by providing customized marketing materials that draw consumers' attention to ENERGY STAR while promoting the dealer's brand name. As a result, Vinyl Window Designs enjoys tremendous loyalty among dealers from coast to coast to coast.
The philosophy behind the program is simple: Vinyl Window Designs believes that the earlier in a sales visit that potential customers are exposed to the ENERGY STAR concept, the more likely they are to absorb information about the benefits of energy-efficient windows. Armed with this market intelligence, the company works closely with dealers to make this happen.
In 2011, Vinyl Window Designs created almost 200 customized marketing products for its dealers across Canada. Focusing the materials on individual dealers, as opposed to producing a single, generic print run for national distribution, means the marketing products are much more likely to end up in the hands of consumers than gathering dust on dealers' shelves. The company offers dealers a wide range of marketing materials, all of which prominently feature the ENERGY STAR symbol. Approximately 200 000 items, ranging from single-page technical sheets to multi-page brochures, were distributed to consumers via dealers in 2011. All of these materials were also available on the Vinyl Window Designs' Web site.
In addition to producing customized marketing materials, Vinyl Window Designs invested in co-operative advertising with dealers in 2011 and provided banners and point-of-purchase materials to help ensure that the ENERGY STAR symbol was visible in showrooms across Canada.
This is the company's second ENERGY STAR Recognition Award. Vinyl Window Designs was named Manufacturer of the Year - Specific Product in 2006.
CATEGORY: COLLABORATIVE INITIATIVE OF THE YEAR
Samsung Electronics Canada Inc.
Samsung Electronics is a leading manufacturer of ENERGY STAR qualified major household appliances and home electronics in the Canadian market. In 2011, the company joined forces with BC Hydro Power Smart to deliver an aggressive month-long rebate program that led to a dramatic jump in sales of Samsung appliances. As a result, Samsung is collecting its first ENERGY STAR award, in the Collaborative Initiative of the Year category.
October is "Power Smart Month" in B.C., an annual campaign in which the provincial utility - itself a winner of several ENERGY STAR awards - engages retailers and manufacturers in promoting special offers on energy-efficient appliances, lighting and home electronics. In 2011, Samsung took advantage of the campaign's visibility and consumer recognition by offering to match BC Hydro's mail-in rebates when a Samsung ENERGY STAR qualified appliance was purchased.
The "Double-up" promotion enabled consumers to claim rebates from BC Hydro and Samsung totalling $150 for ENERGY STAR qualified Samsung clothes washers, $100 for refrigerators and $50 for dishwashers purchased during October from appliance retailers anywhere in the province.
To support the "Double-up" promotion, Samsung worked with BC Hydro to organize and deliver a special training session for retail sales staff. More than 120 sales associates employed by appliance retailers in the Greater Vancouver area attended the event, which proved to be a great refresher on the energy efficiency features of Samsung's appliances in advance of the rebate promotion.
Samsung also supported retailers by providing "Double-up" advertising material for their sales flyers and other marketing initiatives. The company's account management team worked closely with their retail contacts to ensure effective in-store delivery of the rebate campaign. More than 170 retail locations took part in the promotion, including big-box stores, independent chains and individual appliance dealers throughout British Columbia.
As a result of the campaign, rebates of Samsung ENERGY STAR qualified appliances increased more than five-fold during "Power Smart Month" 2011 compared with those the previous year. According to BC Hydro, the "Double-up" promotion resulted in annual energy savings of more than 175 000 kWh for the utility's residential customers.
Working with BC Hydro Power Smart, Samsung has demonstrated exceptional leadership in transforming the market in British Columbia for energy-efficient appliances and is a deserving recipient of the 2012 award for Collaborative Initiative of the Year.
CATEGORY - SUSTAINED EXCELLENCE
The Home Depot Canada
Helping consumers make better choices for themselves and the environment is a goal that The Home Depot Canada strives to reach every day. As Canada's leading home improvement retailer, the company works hard to improve consumer access to and awareness of energy-efficient products, with a strong focus on ENERGY STAR. Having previously been named ENERGY STAR Retailer of the Year three times and Advocate of the Year once, Home Depot now joins an elite group by taking home the 2012 ENERGY STAR Award for Sustained Excellence.
With 180 stores and more than 27 000 employees across Canada, Home Depot continues to be a positive force for change by offering innovative, energy-efficient solutions at the lowest possible price. From its large assortment of ENERGY STAR qualified products across several categories to its take-back programs, in-store campaigns and strategic partnerships with utilities, municipalities, vendors and environmental organizations, Home Depot is a proven leader in helping to transform the market toward sustainability.
Highlights from 2011 include a highly successful LED campaign delivered in partnership with Philips Lighting and utilities. The company brought the first ENERGY STAR qualified LED bulb to the Canadian market in March 2011 and continues to offer the widest selection of LEDs. In addition to launching a multi-channel advertising campaign, Home Depot held dozens of in-store events to raise awareness of LEDs and remodelled all of its lighting bays to draw customers' attention to this energy-efficient technology.
Over the years, Home Depot's Eco Options brand has contributed significantly to increased uptake of ENERGY STAR qualified products, which are featured in several in-store events throughout the year. In 2011, the number of Eco Options products approved and marketed by Home Depot grew by 14 percent. Comprehensive training on Eco Options, including ENERGY STAR qualified products, is mandatory for all store associates across Canada.
ENERGY STAR qualified products are promoted using both permanent and promotional in-store signage, as well as in Home Depot flyers, pamphlets, direct mail drops, utility bill inserts, advertisements (television, radio and print), advertorials, Web sites and contests. Home Depot also began using Facebook and Twitter in 2011 to promote ENERGY STAR qualified products.
Since the launch of Home Depot's market transformation strategy in 2004, the company has witnessed a significant increase in consumer demand for environmentally preferred products. The strategy has helped to foster customer satisfaction and loyalty, increase market share, improve corporate and brand image, and generate increased profits and shareholder value, setting a standard for other retailers to follow.
By making the environment a core pillar of its business, The Home Depot Canada has earned NRCan's prestigious award for Sustained Excellence in promoting energy efficiency and ENERGY STAR.