Serious Energy may be making a wise move by shifting from green building materials to software and financing for energy efficiency. But that move isn’t coming without its share of dashed promises.
That’s the news from Chicago, where Serious has decided to close its green window factory, which it rescued from closing in 2008. About 46 workers will lose their jobs. While Serious said it will keep making its efficient windows at plants in Pennsylvania and Colorado, it also painted a pretty bleak picture of the business at present.
“Ongoing economic challenges in construction and building products, collapse in demand for window products, difficulty in obtaining favorable lease terms, high leasing and utility costs and taxes, and a range of other factors unrelated to labor costs, have compelled Serious to cease production,” the Sunnyvale, Calif.-based startup said in its announcement last week.
Serious has raised more than $140 million in VC investment to pursue a shifting building energy strategy. Last week’s plant closure marks the second time the startup’s green building materials plans have faltered. Production of its first product, a drywall made with less energy and thus fewer environmental impacts, has been severely scaled back in favor of its windows business.