Amit Gupta, chief executive of Miamisburg company Aeroseal, wants to grow his company’s proprietary ventilation shaft-sealing technology.
Aeroseal touts the technology as a time- and money-saving way to restore the integrity of ventilation shafts and duct work, saving energy and money. Gupta bought the company when it was a division of Carrier and moved the business in 2011 to the Dayton area.
Today, Carrier is one of Aeroseal’s many dealers. Aeroseal didn’t really fit as part of Carrier’s business, where Gupta and his partner, Mark Modera, first tried to bring the product to market.
“It didn’t really get the attention,” Gupta said.
That was then. Today, the technology is used by heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) contractors in 50 states and 27 countries, Aeroseal says.
What the company says is a non-toxic, water-based material is sent into ventilation shafts, sealing all holes in air ducts and vents.
Most recently, Aeroseal was named a finalist in an international HVAC exhibition, the 2020 AHR Expo innovation awards, in the “green building” category.
With four seasons and relatively affordable business expenses, Southwestern Ohio beckoned from Syracuse, N.Y., where Gupta had been based with Carrier before 2011.
“We decided this was going to be the coolest place for us to raise a family and create the right kind of culture,” Gupta said in an interview in his office at 225 Byers Road, a site that has been better known in recent years as the home of child safety equipment and infant products maker Evenflo.
“Dayton, a lot of people don’t realize, is really very well situated for start-ups and for growing companies,” Gupta said. “I can fly out of Cincinnati, I can fly out of Dayton, I can fly out of Columbus.”
“And that is quite a lot of flexibility — in any big city, it takes an hour to go to the airport,” he added. “And we go to Columbus in an hour, 10 (minutes).”
Aeroseal had been based in Centerville and still has a small operation there. With the need for more space, Aeroseal’s early bid to buy the former Planet Ford dealership building in Centerville fell through, Gupta said.
But the Byers Road building became available after Evenflo announced in May 2018 that it was shifting about 70 jobs to Boston.
Evenflo retains a presence at the Byers offices, but only takes up about a quarter of the building, said Kevin Dugan, Aeroseal marketing director. Dugan’s company takes up the rest of the space.
“This was perfect,” Gupta said.
Today, Aeroseal has about 50 employees in Miamisburg, with about five to 10 people remaining in Centerville.
Aeroseal has nine job openings at the moment, Dugan said. Like all companies, the company searches for the best candidates. “Regardless of the size of the company, we all have the same challenge,” he said.
All Aeroseal employees focus on the same issue: Leaking ductwork is a “huge problem,” Gupta said.
“If you put that problem in perspective, close to 50 percent of all energy consumed goes into homes,” Gupta said. “And if 30 percent of that leaks out of the duct work, we’re looking at … too big a problem to ignore.”
Temperature swings seem to be getting more extreme. Gupta and his colleagues say they see the problem of upstairs bedrooms not cooling in the summer, of basements freezing in the winter — and of homes generally not being as comfortable as residents would like them to be.
“The comfort and the health issue is part of the solution, but the energy savings is enormous in itself,” Gupta said.
What does the future hold?
Said Gupta: “This could get enormously big. Our goal is to be one of the top companies in this region. There could be hundreds of people, if not thousands of people. We have patents, we have the product pipeline built up — and we have prior patents which we are not even commercializing just yet.”
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