PECO Commercial and Industrial Solutions
Case Study – Albertsons Companies (ACME)

ACME Markets Registers Big Savings From Energy Efficiency Upgrades

Photo of a municipal building.

Total Project Energy Savings

  • $1,165,777 (Annual)
  • 14,687,145 kWh

Incentives Paid

  • $592,569

Ten-Year Savings

  • $11,657,777

For nearly 130 years, ACME Markets has focused on delivering high-quality groceries at competitive prices to residents across southeastern Pennsylvania. Operating under parent company Albertsons Companies, one of the largest food and drug retailers in the nation, ACME has about 50 stores in the PECO service territory. Though it remains a prominent regional chain, the company faces increasing competition from online retailers and other brick-and-mortar grocery stores.

Finding ways to reduce operating and maintenance costs helps ACME further its goal of offering products customers want at affordable prices.

“It all comes back to focusing on how you operate your stores,” says Michael Stankiewicz, energy manager for ACME. “Energy use can be a big problem for grocery stores. Trying to reduce our footprint can help us save.”

When he and other members of the company’s leadership team reviewed a detailed report from PECO on energy usage at area stores and heard about how making energy efficiency upgrades through PECO Commercial and Industrial Solutions could significantly improve the bottom line, they were quick to put the process into motion.

“Upgrading our lighting and refrigeration systems to reduce overall expenditures on a weekly, monthly and yearly basis represents a tremendous opportunity for savings, especially when you’re operating numerous locations,” says Stankiewicz. “When a typical store can save $1,000 a week on its electric bill—and you multiple that out by a year—it turns into millions of dollars of savings for us.”

According to Dana Ward, a communications manager at ACME, the regional chain is fortunate to have national support when it comes to making improvements at local stores. “One of the best things about being a part of this company is leveraging increased buying power and resources,” Ward says.

Financial support from Albertsons Companies, coupled with technical expertise and incentives from PECO for energy-efficient upgrades, has enabled ACME to replace interior and exterior lighting and refrigeration motors and controls at about 30 stores in just two years.

Joe Vaccaro, one of ACME’s facility maintenance managers, says the improvements have made a positive impact on many aspects of the business.

“We’ve heard from our customers, employees and store owners,” says Vaccaro. “Not only are the stores brighter, but they’re safer. And our products look more appealing too.”

Armed with the energy use information from PECO building assessment reports, ACME continues to upgrade its stores. Ongoing energy efficiency projects include making updates to exterior lighting and adding refrigeration motors and controls at more stores in the PECO service territory.

Vaccaro credits the partnership with PECO for ensuring project success. “With PECO’s help, we are able to get a lot more done—and quickly,” he says. “To know that your utility company is going to invest in your stores—and ultimately in your customers—well, that’s program success right there.”

There is a lot of money to be saved with PECO, and they guided us every step of the way. By listening to us, offering advice and keeping communication open, they really helped us push the needle on being efficient.”

—Michael Stankiewicz, Energy Manager
ACME Markets