DriveSave - guaranteed energy savings for large consumers

DriveSave identifies and guarantees energy saving from multiple motor-driven applications across sites in the metal processing, chemical, oil & gas and pulp & paper industries.

Investments from £500,000 to £2 million can target savings of 5,000 MWh and above per year, with a return on investment in under three years.

DriveSave end-user criteria

  • High energy users
  • Prepared to invest between £500,000 to £2 million
  • Looking for energy saving potential typically between 5,000 MWh to 10,000 MWh
  • Demanding a payback in less than 3 years
  • Desire to reduce carbon dioxide emissions
  • Pump, fan and compressor applications as opposed to major process production lines
  • Concern about rising energy prices
The scheme

The scheme complements ABB’s traditional approach of targeting smaller energy efficiency schemes where the investment in variable-speed drives is typically from a few thousand pounds.

With DriveSave, the energy consumption of all the motor-driven applications is measured prior to the installation of variable-speed drives. Based on this measurement ABB assesses the potential savings. Another measurement is taken upon commissioning of the drives. It is these figures that determine the risk and reward. Once the figures are agreed with the end user, it is then ABB's responsibility to install the quantity of variable-speed drives necessary to achieve those savings.

Five year warranty

In addition to the guaranteed energy savings and the design, installation and commissioning of the variable-speed drives, the scheme offers a five year warranty for all of the installed drives, together with a five year preventive maintenance programme.

ABB is hoping to change the mind-set of large energy users by persuading them to buy guaranteed energy savings as opposed to specific hardware. “We have decades of experience in measuring and proving the energy saving and believe that by including the installation, commissioning and on-going support for the drives, end-users have an even more compelling excuse to consider DriveSave,” says Neil Ritchie, Business Unit Manager for low voltage AC drives.


ABB is targeting a market which it says is relatively untapped. Several organisations, including ABB, offer enterprise-wide energy efficiency packages that take account of all process variables such as water, steam, gas, electricity and air. While DriveSave is being offered as part of ABB’s enterprise-wide solution, it is the provision of this scheme as a standalone service that ABB believes to be a first in the market.

While most drive suppliers concentrate on selling a handful of drives to motor-driven applications, often totalling less that £100,000, ABB is targeting large end users. Within such industries, various departments often have the budget for localised variable-speed drive installations.

Reduced energy bill

Such companies are acutely aware of their energy usage and with prices expected to rise they are keen to identify effective ways to reduce the energy bill. For instance, given an electricity price of 8.00p/kWh, a 10,000 MWh saving would equate to £800,000 per annum.

“Previously, smaller projects would be carried out on an ad hoc basis with no guarantees of the energy saving potential. Often the smaller projects are delayed due to capital expenditure restrictions,” says Ritchie. “Through combining numerous smaller projects into one purchase order, ABB DriveSave cuts the time and effort involved in purchasing energy saving projects, making each project more cost-effective.”

For further details of the ABB DriveSave service, email or call 07000 DRIVES (07000 374837)

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