Almost everyone performs a mental checklist when considering the fit of a new business opportunity. In the case of Karl Darden, he was able to check off several important boxes before making the decision to become a franchisee of SuperGreen Solutions.
The 54-year-old Darden, an Avondale resident, spent almost 20 years in sales, sales training and sales management positions with health-care giant Johnson & Johnson. In addition, the U.S. Naval Academy graduate was a helicopter pilot, spending a combined 20 years in the Navy, including nine years on active duty and 11 years in the Navy Reserve.
“I believe those two careers gave me a strong foundation for becoming a small-business owner,” Darden said. “I also studied engineering at the Naval Academy, so that was another experience that led me to the energy efficiency / renewable energy sector.”
Indeed, Darden could not have found a better fit than with SuperGreen Solutions, a franchised retail chain that has become recognized as the “one-stop shop for energy efficient products”, leading the market as the premier advisor, supplier and installer of energy-efficient solutions for both residential and commercial customers.
SuperGreen Solutions West Phoenix opened for business Aug. 25th at the Southwest Valley Chamber of Commerce Business to Business Expo. It is based in Avondale and serves the entire Phoenix metropolitan area.
“I was inspired to became a SuperGreen Solutions franchisee because everyone I spoke with demonstrated a true passion for energy efficiency,” Darden said. “I’ll have the chance to help business owners reduce one of their key operating costs and potentially increase their profitability. I also enjoy the process of educating businesses and homeowners on the benefits of energy efficiency. Not only will they be able to save money, but they will also be reducing their carbon footprint.”
Unlike big-box home improvement stores that offer a limited selection of green energy products to consumers, SuperGreen gives consumers a single point of contact to shop for all energy efficient products for residential or commercial use. They also provide in-home consultations to ensure that all of the customer’s energy needs are met.
The company offers a comprehensive approach, which includes rebate advice, tax credit guidance, sales, installation and after-sales service. Products range from LED lighting and solar power solutions to ventilation and insulation products for homes and businesses. Additionally, the company focuses on the booming industry surrounding energy management, energy storage and electric vehicle charge stations.
“One of the most exciting trends I see in the industry is the rapid rate of innovation,” Darden said. “This is especially true when it comes to solar-power generation and energy storage. There are some truly revolutionary products coming over the next several years.”
Customers include home and business owners looking to lower their energy and maintenance costs through the use of a single product or by completely greening their home or business from floor to ceiling with multiple solutions. Commercial clients typically include auto dealerships, hair salons, gas stations, restaurants and bars, grocery stores, office buildings and more, as well as builders and contractors.
Darden, who estimates he has invested more than $60,000 in launching his business, said that based on his past experience he considers himself somewhat unique.
“After serving nine years on active duty with the Navy I transitioned to Corporate America, working for one of the world’s premier health-care companies while continuing in a reserve capacity with the Navy. Then I saw an opportunity to become a small-business owner and join the exciting, rapidly growing field of renewable energy that I have followed for years,” Darden said. “There are many professionals who might have had two of those experiences, but I imagine far fewer have had the opportunity to do all three.”