Houston-based Incite Energy LLC is winding down its brokerage business via two asset sales to other Houston companies — Infinity Power Partners LLC and CSD Energy Advisors LLC.
The president, founder and sole owner of Incite, Jared Crane, made the deals so he could focus on his work at two other companies — Crane Worldwide Logistics LLC and the Astros Foundation. Crane is president of the Astros Foundation, which is the nonprofit arm of the baseball team, and director of business development at Houston-based Crane Worldwide.
Crane’s father, Jim Crane, is chairman of both Crane Worldwide Logistics and is the owner of the Houston Astros.
The younger Crane started his position at Crane Worldwide earlier this year, he said. He joined to help with the family business’ growth ambitions. Crane Worldwide produces about $800 million in annual revenue right now, but the company has its sights set on much higher than that, Crane said.
“We have some really aggressive plans to double the size of the business,” Crane said. “We’re shooting to get to a couple billion in sales.”
Crane Worldwide handles freight logistics and customs brokerage across a variety of shipping methods, including air, rail, truck and waterborne shipping, according to its website.
Meanwhile, Incite isn’t completely closing, though, Crane said. The company still holds intellectual property rights on some software it had been using internally that it may still try to commercialize, he said.
It is yet to be determined what will happen to the proceeds of the sales, Crane said. Both he and Infinity Power declined to comment on the size or other terms of the deals, but Crane said it more than doubled the initial investment in the company, which was a few million dollars.
Behind the Infinity Deal
Crane knew Peter Selber and Nick Altman, the co-founders and managing partners of Infinity Power, from before either Infinity or Incite had been created, he said.
“Having kept in touch with them, and given their expertise in that area, I thought they were the best to partner with and have them buy the assets,” Crane said.
Infinity, which brokers electricity deals for its customers, gains some of Incite’s high-profile customers through the deal such as multifamily developers Greystar Real Estate Partners LLC and Dinerstein Cos. Not accounting for the Incite deal, Infinity was on track to close 2018 with $4 million in revenue, Selber said. Now the company expects a revenue of $5 million in 2019, Selber said.
“It fits perfectly in our wheelhouse,” Selber said. “We weren’t really looking for this — it was a pleasant surprise, and it really helps us grow.”
The contracts Infinity acquired gives it a platform for further growth outside of Texas, Selber said. Some of the customers with whom Infinity now holds contracts have significant footprints in other parts of the U.S., he said.
“It allows us a greater reach,” Selber said. “We’re already in those markets, but this will allow us to expand our footprint and continue to grow outside of Texas.”
Incite also sold assets to Houston-based CSD Energy Advisors LLC, according to a Sept. 18 press release. Incite’s business development director, Will McGinnis, officially joined Infinity to handle the new customer accounts, Selber said.
Infinity Power has 10 employees.
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