About Us

Rethinking natural ventilation

Breathing Buildings was formed as a spin out company from the University of Cambridge in 2006, following the discovery and development of the proprietary low energy e-stack mixing ventilation system as part of a major research programme at the BP Institute, through the Cambridge-MIT Institute, with funding from BP plc. The technology was filed for patent by the University of Cambridge, and Breathing Buildings has exclusive rights to the technology.

Breathing Buildings was set up to develop and commercialise this low energy ventilation system. During 2006-07 prototypes of the system were developed and tested in the Breathing Buildings laboratories, with a team of highly qualified ventilation experts. The value and potential of the innovation has been recognised by several awards for innovation. Furthermore, since the e-stack system was commercially introduced in 2007, the success of the product and associated consultancy has been recognised by industry via an increasing number of awards.

E-stack systems are operating in hundreds of buildings across the UK, ranging from retail projects to local primary schools, and there is a substantial pipeline of new projects for which Breathing Buildings is actively engaged in supplying e-stack systems.

The Breathing Buildings team contributes significantly to research into natural ventilation. Our links with the University of Cambridge are very strong. Click here for a reference list of background papers and to watch Dr Shaun Fitzgerald giving an introductory lecture on Natural Ventilation please click here.

Meet the team

Shaun FitzgeraldDr Shaun Fitzgerald- Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer

Shaun is a co founder of Breathing Buildings. He completed his PhD in Geothermal Reservoirs at Cambridge University before moving to Stanford University, CA and later spending five years at Bain and Company. He returned to Cambridge carrying out research into natural ventilation at the BP Institute before turning his hand to energy reduction using his expertise in natural ventilation to found Breathing Buildings in 2006.



Image 4David Wilkinson - Managing Director

David joined Breathing Buildings in September of 2009, having completed his MBA at Cambridge University's Judge Institute. Previously, David qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Ernst and Young before working for WPP in London and New York. Working at Breathing Buildings is a return to his roots for David, having studied Engineering at Durham as an undergraduate.






Kevin SargeantKevin Sargeant- Chairman

Kevin Sargeant. A qualified accountant by profession, Kevin founded Flowsave/Airstream Products in the  late '90's, following a successful early career with Initial Services ( Rentokil ). The business was acquired by Vent-Axia in 1990, following which Kevin's career progressed at Vent-Axia through to him taking the position of Group Managing Director in 1996.. During this time the Group was acquired by Smiths Industries Plc. In 2000, Kevin joined the Smiths Industries, Industrials Board and in 2002 lead the £125m MBO of a number of Engineering Companies out of Smiths into Volution Holdings, a vehicle he formed to facilitate the acquisition. Kevin was, as CEO, the principle management investor with support from a private equity backer.

A secondary buyout was undertaken in 2006, for £170m, with the business being very active in the M & A market, notably disposing of its Airstream (£25m) and Cable Management (£60m) Businesses. Kevin disposed of his interests in Volution Holdings in 2012 when the business was sold for £164m.

Kevin currently has a number of Non Executive positions and investments in Breathing Building Ltd, Ventilair Be and Mexicam Ltd, and through his Advisory business he also undertakes short-term consulting appointments around preparing businesses for sale.


Richard Radley- Operations Director

Richard joined Breathing Buildings in 2008. Since this time he has been heavily involved in Manufacturing, Work Place Safety, Project Delivery, On Site Activities, Product Development and Value Engineering throughout the business. He currently leads Operations and is accountable for all post order activities.

Prior to joining the Breathing Buildings "adventure" Richard's career as a multi-disciplinary engineer saw him working all over Europe and North Africa in the FMCG, Petrochemical, Pharmaceutical, Light Industry and Farming sectors. Richard entered the manufacturing sector when he joined Kettle Chips Engineering Department in the nineties, working at times literally "waist deep" with the humble potato!

Richard`s Operations and Manufacturing Teams continuous enthusiasm and determination to be "the Best Natural Ventilation Provider in the World", coupled with his team's desire to deliver above and beyond client expectations, makes Richard extremely proud. He feels very lucky to have such a great set of colleagues to work with and at hand to take on all project opportunities.

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