PE International, the leading vendor of software tools for life cycle assessment, announced today that it was merging with Five Winds International, a sustainability consulting firm with deep expertise in life cycle assessment. The acquisition gives PE International a deeper bench of consulting talent–Five Winds has a staff of about 140–at a time when demand for expertise in sustainability generally and life cycle assessment in particular is surging. (The research report we released last month found growth rates of 30%-40% among tool vendors and consultants and rising interest among companies in adopting life cycle thinking and LCA.)
Companies new to life cycle assessment often get started with the help of consultants, who are in a position to influence a company’s choice of software tools and data bases if the company decides to develop in-house expertise in LCA. (Our research found that bringing LCA in house is important to tap LCA’s ability to foster innovation.) This combination should the combined companies deliver solutions to new and existing customers and foster the increased growth of PE’s software and content business.