A Lanarkshire-based IT and technology firm has today announced that it has struck a partnership set to create hundreds of jobs with an energy firm that uses lampposts to harness wind energy.
NVT Group, which offers services including technology for top sporting events such as the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, said the tie-up with green technology firm Own Energy Solutions will create 25 jobs in the next year, growing to about 300 within three years.
It added that under the deal, which has a value to NVT Group of £3.5 million over the next 15 years, Own Energy will relocate from Glasgow to NVT’s Bellshill base, giving it access to a fully integrated technology platform and back office services, plus connectivity offerings.
Stephen Park Brown, managing director of NVT, said: “We have a great record of working with winning teams and this new venture has every prospect of eclipsing our recent commissions.
“We believe that Own Energy can become a significant player in the renewables market both in the UK and beyond.”
NVT, which was established in 1988, said the energy business has developed a small wind turbine and inverter system to harvest wind energy using lampposts as hosts, leading to metered clean energy being fed directly into the National Grid. Each suitable lamppost conversion will save half a ton of carbon being released into the atmosphere.
David Gordon, chief executive of Own Energy and serial entrepreneur, said, “We chose to partner with NVT Group based on its extraordinary performance in recent years, particularly in the delivery of the technology for world-class sporting events such as the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow… and The Ryder Cup.
“Our business is likely to scale up quickly and we know that NVT will be able to accommodate such growth based on its past experience. There are around ten million lampposts in the UK and upwards of 20 per cent of these are suitable for conversion, which makes this a very scalable business opportunity with huge export potential.”
He added: “We have already had positive preliminary discussions with UK public and private bodies and have had indications of interest from the US, Canada, Mexico, Ireland and South Africa. We believe this business has the potential to achieve an annual UK turnover of over £400m within five years.”
Richard Lyle, SNP MSP for Bellshill and Uddingston, praised the collaboration and said the project is able to deliver both clean green energy and “meaningful financial benefits for hosts such as local government and private owners alike. Bringing jobs to Bellshill is also to be welcomed.”
North Lanarkshire Council leader Jim Logue also welcomed the news, saying: “New jobs, technology and innovation are a healthy mix of ingredients which will, we hope, pay dividends for North Lanarkshire and beyond.”