Climate Technologies Corp. was a classic Metro Detroit business before the automotive industry crash: A decades-old firm with a solid three quarters of its business dependent on the fortunes of the Big 3. When the automakers went down with the rest of the economy in 2008, Climate Technologies Corp. went with them, going from a $30 million firm with 30 employees to a $5 million company with a staff of five.
But the Climate Technologies Corp.
story isn't about its fall as much as its reinvention and current rise. The Farmington Hills-based firm that specializes in climate-control technology is now a green-tech company developing a system that captures toxic gases and concentrates them so they can be used in things like fuel cells. Climate Technologies Corp CEO Walt Zimmerman calls it "a horse manure-to-ice cream play."
"We capture this garbage and turn it into useful fuel," Zimmerman says.
The company is now shipping this product around the world, using its connections with the Big 3 and Dow Chemical Corp. It has also leveraged this product for a semi-finalist spot in the Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition
. Today it has eight employees and five independent contractors, along with the occasional summer intern. Zimmerman expects his staff to hit 12 full-timers by next year.
Source: Walt Zimmerman, CEO of Climate Technologies Corp
Writer: Jon Zemke
Read more about Metro Detroit's growing entrepreneurial ecosystem at SEMichiganStartup.com.