TECHNOLOGY & INNOVATION

TECHNOLOGY
& INNOVATION

LATEST NEWS

By Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 31 May, 2017
Pictured left to right: Xavier Rolet, CEO of the London Stock Exchange Group, Ian Calder-Potts, Director Calder Ltd and the Rt Hon Greg Clark - Secretary of State for Business.
By Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 11 May, 2017
Chippenham-based Good Energy has announced the launch of its second corporate bond.

The sustainable energy utility company was founded in 1999 to transform the UK energy market by helping homes and businesses to be part of a sustainable solution to climate change. All the electricity Good Energy provides comes from over 1,000 different locations across the UK, harnessing local, natural sources like sunshine, wind, rain and biofuels. It owns solar and wind sites including Delabole Wind Farm in Cornwall, Woolbridge Solar Park in Dorset and Hampole Wind Farm in Yorkshire. The company has invested in the planned Tidal Lagoon in Swansea Bay to further diversify its sources of renewable energy.

Good Energy has more than doubled revenues and profits since 2013, when it launched its first corporate bond. Last year revenue growth was 41% to £90.1 million.

The first corporate bond raised £15 million in an oversubscribed offer, and the proceeds were primarily used to support the development of solar farms that supply electricity to tens of thousands of UK homes.

The company said it was now seeking to raise £10 million via a second corporate bond, as part of a diversified funding strategy.

CEO Juliet Davenport said: “In the four years since we launched our first corporate bond, Good Energy has grown significantly and successfully adapted to the changing energy and regulatory environment of the UK.

“New technologies and the way we use energy are bringing a modern, decentralised, low carbon structure to the UK energy industry. We are excited about this evolution and the opportunities it creates, and we believe Good Energy is ideally placed to thrive in this new landscape. In addition to growing our core generation and supply business, we are focusing on developing sustainable energy solutions in areas such as energy storage, electric vehicle networks and green business consultancy to support consumer and business needs in this new environment.

“Good Energy has a long history of customer ownership and we are continuing this with the launch of Good Energy Bonds II, which will be used to develop renewable energy projects and broader corporate initiatives to fuel the future growth of the Company.

“Our strategy is clear – deliver sustainable, profitable growth by understanding and meeting our customers’ needs. We believe this aligns with not only the interests of our investors and customers but ultimately our purpose of supplying 100% renewable and carbon neutral solutions to UK customers.”
By Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 11 May, 2017
Steve Lindsey, the Brit entrepreneur who invented the Blade Compressor which in prototype tests has shown energy savings of +20% has been shortlisted for European Inventor of the Year, the only UK finalist.

Like European Inventor Award finalist James Dyson who re-envisioned the vacuum, Lindsey is breathing new life into British manufacturing. His invention has the potential to make an impact on worldwide energy consumption, according to the European Patent Office.

The winners of the annual innovation prize, run by the European Patent Office will be announced in Venice on 15 June.

Air compressors are used in countless applications, from manufacturing machinery to fridges and air conditioning. And they use up vast amounts of energy, some 10% of Europe’s overall industrial electricity use. Despite their prevalence, modern piston compressors have remained largely unchanged since the 1930s, and their antiquated design makes them inefficient. No one had managed to come up with an effective solution to this problem – until now. With his Blade Compressor, British inventor Steve Lindsey has devised a more efficient, oil-free rotary compressor that offers a greener solution to traditional compression technology, and can deliver energy savings of more than 20%.
For this achievement, the European Patent Office named Steve Lindsey as a finalist for the European Inventor Award 2017 in the category Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises. The winners of the 12th edition of the EPO's annual innovation prize will be announced at a ceremony in Venice on 15 June.

"Steve Lindsey's invention offers a clever, highly-efficient alternative to traditional air compressors, and is poised to shake up the compression industry," said EPO President Benoît Battistelli announcing the European Inventor Award 2017 finalists. "Because air compressors are used across such a large number of industries, it also has the potential to make an impact on worldwide energy consumption and cut carbon footprints across many energy-intensive sectors."

A natural technical problem-solver from a young age, as well as a motorsport enthusiast, Lindsey has raced professionally and worked as a test-driver for a German car company for many years. His fascination with making continuous improvements to technology made him well-placed to take on the challenge of improving such a widely used, but often overlooked technology as compressors.
Lindsey said: “To begin with I didn’t know a great deal about compressors, like many people. And then I read that 10% of electricity used within Europe across all industries goes into compressors. It’s a fantastically high figure. And I realized that if you could make a difference to that, you could potentially make a big difference to energy usage across Europe.”

Lindsey's Blade Compressor features a rotating piston blade inside a circular chamber that simultaneously compresses air and induces new air into the chamber in one continuous movement. As the blade moves within the chamber, it induces air behind it and compresses air in front. The compressed air is released just before the piston blade slides through a slit in a spinning disc, which bisects the chamber: the air that was behind the piston is now in front of it and is compressed while more air is drawn in from what is now behind the blade.
To market his invention, Lindsey founded the company Lontra in 2004. The firm initially targeted the wastewater sector, an energy-intensive area that accounts for roughly 1% of the UK’s total energy budget, similar to that of other European countries.

In 2012, Lontra conducted its first major trial of the Blade Compressor at a British waste water treatment facility. The blade compressor demonstrated a 20% reduction in electricity consumption – a major shakeup in an industry used to much smaller, incremental gains.
According to Lontra, with the breadth of its potential uses, the Blade Compressor could save 2 terawatt hours of electricity in Europe a year (roughly the electricity consumption of a city of 200 000 households) and 860000 tonnes of CO2 (roughly the same annual output of 180 000 passenger vehicles).

In 2015, he won the UK's Manufacturing Entrepreneur of the Year award. His Blade Compressor was named the "most innovative new technology of the year" at the Water Industry Achievement Awards (2013) and the "Top Energy Product/Service" at the Environment and Energy Awards (2015).

Read our 60 Top Innovations feature in the July issue of Business & Innovation Magazine.
By Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 11 May, 2017
Following the success of a regional cyber trade mission to Maryland last year, a US business delegation of cyber security companies will return to the Midlands between 5-9 June 2017.
Maryland business delegates will be welcomed by companies and representatives from the Midlands Engine at InfoSec Europe 2017, Europe’s number one information security event. Malvern-based QinetiQ will host an industry day on 8 June where local cyber companies, universities and sector stakeholders can attend, participate and learn more about potential opportunities with US partners.

The US delegation from Maryland will also join Midlands companies in signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to formalise the cyber sector’s long lasting business partnership with the USA.
Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), Marches LEP and Hereford Enterprise Zone are hosting the return mission from Baltimore, Maryland in partnership with the Department for International Trade and Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce. The delegation forms part of a programme of trade investment missions between the Midlands and US between 2016-18.

Gary Woodman, Chief Executive of Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “I am looking forward to meeting with the Maryland cyber businesses again, with the opportunity to show them how fantastic Worcestershire and the Midlands is in terms of high quality cyber skills and internationally renowned businesses.

“We are working with partners to continue the successful trade programme, helping our local businesses to build future relationships with high-profile international companies and also helping to raise the profile of our strength in cyber security on an international scale.”
By Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 04 May, 2017

The latest Oxford Cyber Security Cluster-supported event looking at how SMEs across Oxfordshire approach cyber security took place on Harwell Campus in Oxfordshire with talks from Nicola Blackwood, MP for Oxford West & Abingdon, Detective Sergeant (DS) Sally Russell from Thames Valley Police, Sue Staunton of James Cowper Kreston, Neil Britten from Vistage and Stewart Benger on behalf of the Cluster.

Attended by over thirty people from across the county, our speakers examined the challenge for SMEs in making sure that cyber security is and remains firmly on the board agenda. DS Sally Russell first reminded the audience that this is a crime that affects businesses large and small by showing a series of videos of local business owners who have themselves been victims of cyber-crime.

Neil Britten from Vistage, gave a summary of views from their members, much of which backs up earlier survey findings. Typical comments were “I don’t have time to”, “It’ll never happen to me” and “I’ll deal with it if it happens”. During Neil’s insightful talk, he also reminded us that we should be mindful that buying decisions are often based upon emotion and not fact, as we’d like to believe.

Nicola Blackwood, outlined the UK Government’s perspective on the crucial part cyber security plays within our modern economy. She talked about the UK Government’s recent National Cyber Security Strategy, GCHQ’s new National Cyber Security Centre, the Cyber Essentials scheme, guidance such Ten Steps to Cyber Security and addressing the skills gap. She also spoke about her personal experience as a Minister in the Department of Health.

Sue Staunton from James Cowper Kreston spoke of her experiences of working with her SME clients and efforts to encourage them to ensure they have appropriate measures in place to reduce their vulnerability to cyber-crime.

Stewart Benger, Oxford & Thames Valley Cyber Security Cluster Manager, went on to provide some views from the cluster. One of the highlights of the event for the speakers, though, was an impromptu opportunity for a photo shoot with Commander Tim Peake (or more correctly a life-size cardboard cut-out!), the UK’s last astronaut to spend time on the International Space Station.

For more information on the Oxford Cyber Security Cluster please visit  www.oxcyber.uk .

The site also includes details of future events being run across the county, along with other useful information on the topic of cyber security.

By Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 21 Apr, 2017

ADEY’s pioneering work in maintaining and protecting central heating systems has been rewarded with a second Queen’s Award for innovation.

Announced by Her Majesty The Queen, the Queen’s Award for Enterprise celebrates the excellence achieved by Cheltenham-based ADEY in developing its innovative range of high performance chemicals used by heating engineers and plumbers in households and workplaces all over the UK – and to a growing international customer-base too.

Specifically, the award recognises the development of new chemical formulations for the company’s MC1+ ‘Protector’ and MC3+ ‘Cleaner’ range of products, uniquely designed to work in tandem with ADEY’s market-leading MagnaClean magnetic filters. The chemicals safely help to clean the water that circulates inside central heating systems and prevent further corrosion, before the water passes through a magnetic filter which makes it easy to capture and remove the ‘sludge’. By keeping the system clean, the boiler will work more efficiently, saving energy and reducing repair costs.

“We’re delighted and incredibly proud to receive this great honour – the UK’s highest accolade for business success,” says John Vaughan, ADEY Chief Executive. “It’s testament to our highly skilled teams. Innovation has always been at the heart of the ADEY story.

“Since our original invention of magnetic filtration and the MagnaClean filter – which also received a Queen’s Award for innovation – we’ve been committed to developing an integrated approach to heating system protection. The introduction of a new arm within the business to research, create and test innovative and highly advanced chemical formulations was a natural step,” he adds.

“By bringing together the most experienced and technically able experts, ADEY is proud to have created the most advanced chemicals yet seen on the market. This recognition at the highest level gives the whole company a massive boost.”

ENDS

 

EDITOR’S NOTES

1. ADEY pioneered magnetic filtration technology more than ten years ago when former heating installer Chris Adey invented the MagnaClean ® filter.

2. ADEY employs 95 staff

3. ADEY is headquartered in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire and has offices in Cluses, France and state-of-the-art research laboratory in Sittingbourne, Kent.

4. ADEY’s laboratory is the only facility in the heating industry to be accredited by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) for testing central heating system water and water treatment products to the highest industry standards

5. In 2012, ADEY was recognised with its first Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Innovation for its MagnaClean technology.

6. In 2015, ADEY won the Service and Maintenance Initiative of the Year Award at the H&V News Awards for its industry-leading approach to best practice in heating system maintenance


Further information: Rachel Meagher and Bethan Simkins on 01242 633100
Email: rachel.meagher@targetgroup.co.uk bethan.simkins@targetgroup.co.uk
Photography: Digital high and low resolution images available
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