Before I moved to South Florida, I spent five years in South Carolina as the editor of a business newspaper.

The area where I lived was exploding in business growth at the time. New companies were building new buildings or retrofitting old ones almost daily.

I saw a trend with these companies: They were hyper-focused on being energy-efficient.

As they told the public, it was good for the environment to have a minimal energy footprint.

Of course, I knew another major reason: They wanted to save money. Keeping energy costs as low as possible was a win-win.

Businesses hire companies to provide these initiatives:

  • LED lighting uses less energy.
  • High-performance windows lead to lower heating and cooling costs.
  • Water recycling systems take rainwater and use it for consumption.

It’s pretty genius.

Companies shifting to an energy-efficient model spells opportunity — one that smart investors can profit from.

First, we need to understand why this trend is so important.

Energy Efficiency: LEED-ing the Way

One way for companies to show their commitment to energy efficiency is to become LEED certified. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.

Being LEED certified means the company uses a highly efficient, cost-saving green building.

In the last 10 years, the number of buildings with LEED certification has grown by 116%.

LEED Certification Explosion

A study found that LEED-certified buildings save 14% in combined energy, water maintenance and waste savings.

As more businesses seek out the cost savings of working in a LEED-certified building, they’ll lean on companies that help them get there.

And we’ve found one positioned to do just that.

Adam O’Dell is Money & Markets’ Chief Investment Strategist. His proprietary stock rating system scores this company high in value and low in volatility.

It’s a solid investment opportunity for you.

This Renewable Energy Giant Is a Winner

Using Adam’s stock rating system, we found Ameresco Inc. (NYSE: AMRC), a company with a ton of upside.

Ameresco provides energy efficiency, infrastructure upgrades and renewable energy to businesses and organizations in North America and Europe.

AMRC Continues Rising

energy efficiency AMRC

Last month, it signed a deal with the Oregon Department of Transportation to convert streetlights to more energy-efficient LED bulbs. The company also brought its first wind farm in Ireland online. This is Ameresco’s first renewable-energy farm outside of North America.

How AMRC Ranks in Adam’s System

AMRC recently earned a rating of 93.9 in Adam’s proprietary stock rating system — better than all but 6% of all rated stocks.

Its momentum, growth and volatility ratings are all 90 or higher (Note: a high volatility score means the company has low volatility compared to the rest of the market).

The stock’s returns are better than 83% of all rating stocks. The volume of investors buying this stock (aka. trading volume) supports that.

But more than that, AMRC delivers investors high returns with mild volatility.

Its beta is lower than two-thirds of its competitors, and its risk-adjusted returns are rated a 95 out of 100! Beta measures a stock’s volatility compared to the rest of the market. The lower the beta, the lower the volatility.

AMRC is considered a “growth” stock, but it trades at a fair price right now.

Its price to earnings is better than two-thirds of the market. Its price to sales is rated at 80 out of 100.

The company’s profit margins are average, but Ameresco’s returns on assets and equity are stronger than 80% of the companies Adam’s system rated.

The energy-efficient niche is fast-growing. Ameresco is undoubtedly a “growth” stock — its earnings-per-share growth is rated 90 and its net income growth is rated 92!

Our Takeaway

In tough economic times, companies will keep seeking ways to cut costs. Energy efficiency is a no-brainer.

Adam’s system has found that Ameresco Inc.’s high value and low volatility make it a buy today.

As ARMC grows, it will be a leader in its field. Folks who buy the stock now will profit as it helps more organizations adopt energy-efficient solutions.

As businesses look for ways to trim expenses, they’ll look to Ameresco Inc. to help them do it.

Investors who get in now will reap the rewards now and in the future.