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Weekly Briefing: April 8-12, 2024

Week of April 8, 2024

EFCG just wrapped up its 24th Annual CFO Conference on April 3-5 at Convene in Chicago, Illinois. We welcomed close to 150 financial leaders from across the AEC industry, with 60 first-time participants and 110 firms represented.


The conference kicked off with EFCG Managing Partner, Rebecca Zofnass, delivering EFCG's signature AEC Industry Overview. Attendees also heard from firm leaders during panel sessions focused on topics such as Technology Trends & AI, M&A, Building the Future Executive Financial Team, Financial Sustainability, and Succession Planning. We are also delighted to share that Theresa Jang, EVP and CFO of Stantec, was presented with EFCG's 2024 CFO of the Year award for leading her firm through tremendous financial growth, multiple successful acquisitions, and acceleration of the evolution of Stantec’s financial operations.


EFCG would like to thank everyone who attended this year's CFO Conference and to our sponsorship partners – Greyling, Deltek, CareerSmith, and Savills -- for their continued partnership!


For more information on EFCG conferences, click the button below or email Kim Thieme at

California Announces Two Grid Expansion Projects Connecting Offshore Wind

  • California is poised for significant investment in two offshore wind energy projects, with plans to allocate $4.1 billion in new grid infrastructure to support these initiatives. The offshore wind projects aim to connect clean energy generated back to the electric grid and reduce reliance on fossil fuels.

  • The proposed infrastructure projects include underwater transmission lines, substations, and onshore interconnection facilities.

  • The offshore wind industry's growth is expected to create thousands of jobs and stimulate economic development in coastal regions of California.

  • Despite the potential benefits, challenges remain, including regulatory hurdles, environmental concerns, and the need for extensive coordination among stakeholders.


The DOT Announces Rule Modernizing the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program

  • The Department of Transportation (DOT) announced a final rule on the Disadvantage Business Enterprise (DBE) and Airport Concessions DBE (ACDBE) programs on April 9th, aimed at reducing the burden on these businesses so that they can focus on growing.

  • The rule streamlines the DBE certification and eligibility process, including expediting inter-state reciprocity so businesses can more easily operate across different states, and expanding the personal net worth cap. It also strengthens the prompt payment requirements to ensure DBEs get paid on time.

  • It mandates DBE open-ended performance plans for prime contractors on design-build projects, making it easier for primes to bring DBEs onboard throughout the course of the project, not just at the beginning. The rule also expands existing DBE directories to enable prime contractors to identify a DBE’s location, lines of work, and website. 

  • The DOT’s goal is to have 15% of all federal procurement go to small and disadvantaged businesses, but currently achieves about 10% of federal procurement going to such firms.


Big Tech Drives the Demand for Clean Energy

  • At CERAWeek, major tech companies, including Google, Amazon, and Microsoft, highlighted that they are increasingly focused on securing sufficient energy to power their operations. This heightened interest stems from their growing energy consumption due to data center expansions and cloud computing services.

  • Tech giants are pursuing various strategies to address their energy needs, including investing in renewable energy projects, signing long-term power purchase agreements, and exploring innovative solutions such as energy storage and grid flexibility.

  • Despite their progress in adopting renewable energy, challenges persist, including the intermittency of renewable sources and the need for additional infrastructure to support their energy goals.

April 2, 2024

Morgan Stanley Capital Partners (MSCP), the middle-market focused private equity team at Morgan Stanley Investment Management, has acquired Resource Innovations (RI), a California-based tech-enabled services firm focused on energy efficiency and sustainability. MSCP acquired a controlling interest in RI from BC Investment Partners, and RI founder, Lauren Casentini, who will continue to serve as CEO and remain a significant equity holder in the firm. Eric Kanter, Managing Director and Head of Industrial Services at MSCP, commented, "Resource Innovations' tech-enabled services help turn energy policy goals into reality. [RI] supports core energy efficiency needs while seeking to address the next phase of clean energy transition challenges being faced across the United States. We believe [RI]'s record of consistent growth and ability to expand into these emerging areas with tremendous market potential have paved the way for continued opportunity."


April 8, 2024

Verdantas, an Ohio-based environmental consulting firm, backed by RTC Partners, has acquired Project Navigator, Ltd. (PNL), a California-based management and project coordination services firm, specializing in Federal (CERCLA) and State Superfund sites. With offices in California and Texas, PNL will enhance Verdantas' suite of services in the Western region and expand their reach in the Gulf Coast states. Jesse Kropelnicki, CEO of Verdantas, commented, "PNL brings robust program management capabilities for CERCLA and RCRA sites, along with technology-focused service offerings that complement our existing environmental assessment and remediation practice. These services align perfectly with our commitment to sustainability and technology."


April 10, 2024

Verdantas, an Ohio-based environmental consulting firm, backed by RTC Partners, has acquired CT Consultants, Inc. (CT), an Ohio-based provider of architectural, engineering, and planning services intended for government agencies, water authorities, and transportation departments. The acquisition bolsters each firm's expertise in water and wastewater systems engineering and expands their client reach, particularly in the public sector. Jesse Kropelnicki, CEO of Verdantas, commented, "We are thrilled to welcome CT to the Verdantas team. Their expertise, steadfast commitment to clients, and support of their people align deeply with our values. Together, we will continue its growth in those markets while adding to the national Verdantas bench strength."


April 11, 2024

TransSystems, a Missouri-based engineering, architectural, and design consulting services firm, has acquired NCM Engineering Corp (NCM), a California-based firm specializing in the delivery of transportation infrastructure improvement projects across transportation planning, freeways, highways, roadways, general civil engineering, bridges, and specialty structures. All NCM employees will join TranSystems offices across the United States. Mohan Char, CEO of NCM, commented, "The merger between NCM and TranSystems embodies a natural cultural fit built on a foundation of innovation, excellence, and client-centric values. Together, we are stronger, more innovative, and better positioned to meet the evolving needs of our clients, projects, and communities."


April 11, 2024

Legence, a California-based engineering and consulting services firm, backed by Blackstone, has acquired P2S Inc. (P2S), a California-based engineering, commissioning, and construction management firm, specializing in critical sectors including higher education, federal and municipal institutions, health care facilities, data centers, and more. The acquisition further expands Legence's West Coast presence and technical capabilities. Jeff Sprau, CEO of Legence, commented, "At Legence, we seek partners who share our values and commitment to client services, not just industry-leading results. PS2's alignment with our culture and processes makes them a perfect fit. Together, we'll expand our geographic reach and deliver even stronger results for our clients, all while working towards a sustainable future."


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