CIG: Contractor Innovation Group

Innovation Partner Exchange

The Innovation Partner Exchange is an opportunity for early-stage technology and other innovative companies (those still creating new products and services) to share their ideas with CIG executives with the goal of co-developing industry-leading technologies, applications and establishing long-term, mutually beneficial business relationships.

CIG, the Contractor Innovation Group, is a long-standing peer group of industry-leading mechanical contractors and facilities solutions companies. As a combined group, CIG represents approximately $2B in annual revenues and 8,000 employees.


APPLY BY MARCH 31, 2020. 

We’re in an industry that often relies on classic tools – when you need a wrench, use a wrench. We also believe that when you need an app, you should use an app – even if you have to create it. We take decades of knowledge and experience and apply it to technology, so we can create, adapt and use the very latest tools for our customers.

We have a proven record of successfully partnering with innovative companies, such as XOi  and DST to drive early stage development and help them enter and thrive in our industry.

Lee Company is specifically interested in partnering with the following types of companies or offerings:

  • Artificial intelligence
  • Augmented reality
  • Virtual reality
  • Holographic projection
  • Companies utilizing blockchain theory for potential applications in our industry
  • Robotics companies focused on specialty fabrication and construction
  • Robotics and drone companies specializing in industrial material handling & logistics
  • Logistics technology companies focused on tracking materials & personnel
  • Field service productivity technologies
  • Field productivity tools, hardware and materials
  • Advanced fabrication technologies
  • Construction productivity technologies
  • Companies developing large scale alternate materials & methods for field service & construction applications
  • Renewable & alternative energy production & storage
  • Micro-grid/self-contained energy grid for buildings & campuses
  • Autonomous vehicle programs focused on mobile service or material/parts delivery
  • Wearable productivity technology
  • Wearable safety technology
  • Other safety technologies
  • Mobile employee engagement & wellness
  • Predictive analytics & remote diagnostics tools
  • Next level, seamless intuitive integrated building automation/security systems
  • IoT applications for our industry
  • Remote environmental monitoring
  • Alternative materials and methods for our industry
  • Innovative fleet technologies
  • 3D printing technologies for field service, construction, and mechanical fabrication
  • Innovative merchant services/banking technology for field service
  • Regulatory compliance/environmental impact (e.g. refrigerant recovery/tracking)
  • Creative B2B integrations

This program is specifically designed for co-development opportunities between emerging companies/technologies and Lee Company. Subsequently, Lee Company is not interested in the following as part of this program:

  • Currently mass marketed mature businesses and products already serving our industry
  • Currently mass marketed “off the shelf” software applications of any type
  • Currently mass marketed ERP Solutions
  • Currently mass marketed GPS Solutions
  • Currently mass marketed HVAC, Plumbing, Electrical, Security products, etc.
  • Other currently mass marketed products and services

Lee Company has been an excellent partner. The ability to test new features, flex out new theories, and be connected to other people in their ecosystem are just a few examples of how the partnership has been beneficial for us. Lee Company is very well respected in North America; having their support as they connect us with other folks that are doing what they do has been absolutely HUGE for our business. They were willing to take a chance on a young company to see how wearable technology, smart glasses, and our software as a service enterprise solution could work for their 300+ technicians. They were very helpful and understanding of a company trying to find its way in the market. Young companies need to remember: it’s not just about the features and benefits of your software. How do technicians in the field leverage technology solutions in a meaningful way? The ability to use a simple technology solution that works every single time is key. You also need to sell the “Why?” effectively, and what it means to the end customer. Lee Company has allowed us to flex our muscles on this concept and really learn how to effectively address these challenges within an organization.

Aaron Salow, CEO/XOi Technologies

Vision has changed the way we do business both internally and externally. Customers expect transparency and accountability from their partners. We are in a position to integrate a high level of transparency into our business today.

Lee Company's commitment to their vision, mission and values has been experienced firsthand by Discovery Sound Technology (DST). DST's vision is to deliver technology that transforms predictive and preventive maintenance. To ensure DST's vision becomes a reality, our technology has to provide meaningful value to technicians, companies, and their customers. When their leadership team heard from this well-respected employee that DST’s technology was potentially “game changing”, our relationship quickly evolved into a partnership. Since our first meeting, the DST team has worked closely with their organization to ensure our patented technology evolves into an easy to use, real-time ultrasound diagnostic system that can extend equipment life, reduce surprise failures, provide transparent reporting and improve customer satisfaction. Having the opportunity to partner with a respected, successful and innovative company in the HVAC industry has had an immeasurable impact on our business.

Brett Shaw, President & CEO

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