Marlon Kobacker is the director of Sustainable Future Group, an advisory, technology, and finance firm specializing in the development and implementation of environmentally sustainable solutions capable of reducing operational costs for businesses across all sectors. One of the field’s most respected advisory professionals, Marlon has worked with property developers, builders, business owners, and asset managers in need of expert assistance concerning sustainable design and clean energy.
With more than 13 years of experience in the sustainable design and clean energy industry, Marlon is responsible for some of the field’s most critical innovations. The longtime sustainable design expert has shared his expertise often through regular speaking engagements as well as through the publication of articles and books covering a wide range of subjects, including his most recently published book, “Removing the Capital Cost Barrier to Sustainable Building Design.”
Marlon is a graduate of the University of New South Wales, where he earned his Master of the Built Environment in Sustainable Design before serving as a lecturer at the UNSW School of Renewable Energy Engineering. Marlon’s previous professional experience includes advisory roles with AECOM, Arup, and Cundall, among several other global firms. In addition to his current role with Sustainable Future Group, Marlon also offers input and advice on projects undertaken by Clean Energy Corporation Australia and EarthRights International.
In your own words what do you do?
Through Sustainable Future Group, I am able to offer clients advisory services aimed at the reduction of operating costs while incorporating environmentally sustainable design solutions. We also provide clients access to technology products and specialized funding options, which makes Sustainable Future Group uniquely suited to meet the comprehensive needs of clients.
What led you to your current business?
This has been a field I have always been interested in and have felt deeply passionate about, so I entered this endeavor with the hope that I could demonstrate how businesses could reduce operational costs through the use of environmentally sustainable solutions. There is still a general misconception regarding the costs associated with sustainability, but more and more businesses are beginning to realize that our environmentally sustainable design practices are also the most cost-efficient option as well.
Could you walk us through your process of developing your business?
James Cronan and I had an informal meeting to discuss a common vision for what Sustainable Future Group could ultimately accomplish, and it was immediately apparent that we had similar goals and ideas for the business. We agreed that a comprehensive approach that included advisory, tech, and finance would be most ideal, especially since it would enable us to generate the best possible results for our clients on a consistent basis.
Did you encounter any particular difficulties in the beginning?
Every business venture should expect to encounter difficulties, but we planned ahead and developed contingencies to ensure our long-term success.
What is your long-term plan?
We plan on achieving continual growth that enables Sustainable Future Group to serve a wide base of clients on an international scale.
Could you share with us some industry insights?
This is an exciting time to be involved in the sustainable design and renewable energy industry given the exceptional opportunities for growth that currently exist. With that said, there is still much more that needs to be done to better educate the public and to raise greater awareness of the critical issues our industry hopes to address.
What are some important lessons you’ve learnt about entrepreneurship?
Achieving entrepreneurial success is so much easier when you choose an endeavor that inspires you and addresses a true societal need.
Any tips for achieving success?
There is no substitute for preparation, and even the greatest business concept will struggle in its earliest stages without adequate planning and advance preparation.