Job title: Co-founder and Chief Revenue Officer, Convrg
Why he’s a 2023 Top 40 Under 40: He co-founded a cleantech company that uses his state-of-the-art technology design to reduce methane emissions in the oil and gas sector.
Back in 2018, Ben Klepacki sketched a design on an airplane napkin as he flew home from a meeting with an oil and gas producer. That sketch would become the foundation for Convrg, a 100-person cleantech company that is expected to bring in $45 million in revenue in 2023.
Convrg’s technology — known as EPOD — is used across North America to eliminate methane venting at well sites. The company is on pace to eliminate the equivalent of taking 110,000 cars off the road by year’s end. “Too often, businesses focus on making money at all costs and not enough on doing what’s right,” says Klepacki. “The two do not need to be mutually exclusive.”
Entrepreneurship has been a rollercoaster ride. In 2019, Klepacki and his brother-in-law walked away from good jobs to found Convrg’s predecessor Westgen Technologies. At the time, their partners were pregnant, and they put their homes on the line and used their life savings. They volunteered engineering services to another company in trade for rent on office space. At one point, they thought they’d lost everything when the price of oil plummeted. “I was terrified every single day. I still am,” he says. “But I don’t believe in situations where there’s not a solution.”
Klepacki says he was bullied as a kid and is driven by never wanting to be in the position of being victimized again. He threw himself into sports and competed as a member of Canada’s national bobsleigh team from 2010 to 2014.
He started his career in alternative energy but came to believe that he could make a bigger difference working within oil and gas to improve its environmental footprint. “I feel that we’re not seeing the end of oil and gas anytime soon,” Klepacki says. “If that’s a reality, we’d better get better at how we produce it.”
“My wife, who carries the weight of our entrepreneurship; my family and friends; and my business partner Connor.”