Improving Energy Efficiency
DKC Energy Solutions Inc. brings expertise in spray foam insulation
DKC Energy Solutions Inc. is helping companies lower energy costs and reduce their carbon footprint. The Mount Vernon, New York-based company provides spray foam insulation services that stop heat and cool air from escaping buildings, providing an eco-friendly solution to reducing energy use.
The company, founded by cousins David Kelly and Adrian McGirr, both originally from Ireland, serves commercial and residential clients in the five boroughs of New York, Westchester County, a large portion of New Jersey, Connecticut, and parts of Upstate New York.
“Spray foam insulation is going to save you money on your electric bill and keep your house or building warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer,” David says.
He explains that spray foam insulation not only blocks heat and cool air from escaping, but also stops those pesky drafts, keeping interiors more comfortable. With a higher R-value per inch than other types of insulation, such as cellulose or fiberglass, spray foam insulation provides more insulating power than other insulation options.
According to David, the name DKC Energy Solutions came from the push for energy efficiency in today’s building codes and for companies’ desire to “go green.” The spray foam insulation business began as a side business of DKC Inc., which stands for David Kelly Construction, a high-end carpentry, drywall and custom millwork shop that David started in 2006.
Still on Vacation
David, 36, came to the U.S. in 2002. He had grown up around the construction industry in Ireland and knew of friends and co-workers who had immigrated to the U.S. to set up their own companies. “They’d come back to Ireland saying that in the United States, the streets were paved with gold. I decided I would go and have a look for myself. I originally came for a two-week vacation. That was 15 years ago. I’m still on vacation, if you like,” he jokes.
After working for another company for a number of years, David decided to go out on this own and formed DKC Inc. “As DKC Inc., we were working on high-end townhouses and apartments in Manhattan. We got involved in insulation as the means and methods for construction evolved,” David says. “We began installing fiberglass insulation, but with changes in energy codes, we switched to spray foam insulation. Some of my clients wanted spray foam,” he says. “So it seemed like it was something that was going to take off because of the way the industry is changing and the way everyone is trying to save money by going green, making houses more efficient and spending less and getting more for it. So I thought it was a great idea.”
Connecting with Family
David knew he had an advantage in entering the spray foam insulation market. He had stayed in touch with his cousin, Adrian, 41, whom he had grown up with in Tyrone in the north of Ireland. The two had worked on various business projects in Ireland, and Adrian was a spray foam insulation expert.
“I founded Complete Insulations in Dublin about 12 years ago,” Adrian says. “It’s one of the largest insulation companies in Ireland and specializes in spray foam insulation.”
On David’s first few projects, Adrian came along to train him on the proper application of spray foam insulation. “Slowly but surely, I roped Adrian into coming here permanently,” David says. “We decided we would combine our knowledge and our skills. We concentrated here in New York simply because there are more opportunities and a need for our services.”
Making the decision to uproot and move to America didn’t happen overnight, Adrian says. “It took a lot of thinking about it.” Complete Insulations was doing well and is still active in Ireland. “I had insulated probably half of Ireland but thought it was time to broaden my horizons,” he says. Adrian sold his interest in Complete Insulations and made the move to the United States.
David and Adrian formed DKC Energy Solutions in October 2018, a month before Adrian arrived in the U.S. He moved his wife and young son to the U.S. in January of this year, the same month that DKC Energy Solutions did its first job. David and Adrian are now both permanent U.S. residents.
An Increase in Business
The company pairs David’s experience at running a successful construction business, leveraging his contacts with leading general contractors and architects, with Adrian’s experience and knowledge in spray foam insulation. Adrian supervises new employees and provides hands-on training in applying spray foam insulation.
Business has accelerated rapidly as they’ve gotten work in the pipeline. “We’ve been busy,” Adrian says. David hopes that their first year revenue will exceed $750,000, maybe even be closer to $1 million. “Whether we get there or not is entirely up to us,” David says. The company expects to have one spray foam rig at full capacity within the first year and a second rig operating at full capacity within 36 months.
“We are both very young in business. Every job we do we learn something new from the people we are working with. There is always new products, new ways and new methods. We are learning from the experience every single day, and we are trying to take what we learn and the experience that we gather up, and the end game is to provide that to the customer as better service, better quality and better products.”
“We are very fast and responsive,” he continues. “We’ll get back to you right away. We’ll work around your schedule, whether it be daytime, nighttime or weekends. We try to make ourselves available on any schedule. And we will work with you. We will give you what the market provides us in term of quality service,” David says.
With a team of 10 employees, the company works hard to keep its staff up to date on the latest innovations in the marketplace. “Anytime we need help and advice with anything we are doing, we have a large pool of people who we can work with and learn from and educate our staff,” he says.
“The whole industry is changing. We are trying to get in front and be part of the tomorrow of this industry.”