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History

Partners photo. From left: Dilip Kamat, Henk van Duijnhoven, Gary Farha, Kevin Rackstraw, Alan ZangHistory

Our founders, Gary Farha and Dilip Kamat, began working together over 30 years ago as energy practice leaders and partners at McKinsey & Company, one of the world’s premier global management consulting firms. They realized that the regulated returns to shareholders and a hundred years of established processes made it very difficult for utilities to transition to a customer-first model that adapted to changing market needs.

Twenty years later, electric market deregulation, the advent of natural gas as a marginal fuel source and improvements in efficiency technology had drastically altered the market and reduced the overall cost of electricity. But as renewable energy gained traction due to a growing demand for sustainable solutions and lower costs, utilities were still capturing the lion’s share of their value. Farha and Kamat considered this and saw an opportunity for a broader set of customers to take more control with renewables.

They assembled a team of energy experts from around the country and built CustomerFirst Renewables (CFR), the first renewable energy advisory services firm to be focused solely on the end-user. CFR was designed from the beginning to operate outside the existing paradigm, founded on transparency and giving customers product offerings that were different from what had been available before. Since 2010, we have expanded to a team of over 40 professionals and accumulated a satisfied base of global C&I, higher ed, government and other institutional clients.

CFR has begun to expand our client service offerings beyond energy. Jonathan Lanciani joined the team to lead our water resiliency service line, bringing deep expertise in water reclamation and reuse. CFR’s water resiliency line parallels its energy services, offering water strategy, optimization, implementation, and optimization support.

We at CFR believe that customers will continue to have an ever-growing in role managing their own energy and water supplies. With growing innovation on the supply-side and the increasing implications of climate change on each end user’s triple bottom line, CFR has committed to helping energy and water users develop strategies and implement solutions to achieve their goals. 

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