Gamble completes NGenTec team

A WIND turbine component developer backed by engineering tycoon Jim McColl has completed assembling its “blue-chip management team” as it seeks £10 million of funding to take its equipment through to production.

NGenTec, which was spun out of Edinburgh University’s engineering school in 2009, has made a generator that can either fully replace a wind turbine’s gearbox or act in tandem with it.

Independent research commissioned by the company suggested its generator could cut the cost of operating a turbine by £1m.

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David Brown, the gears business within McColl’s Clyde Blowers group, took an equity stake in NGenTec – whose name is derived from the phrase “novel generator technology” – in February and will build a prototype at its Huddersfield yard.

NGenTec has now brought on board wind industry veteran Charles Gamble from Nordic Windpower to complete its executive team.

Although Gamble will be styled as chief marketing officer, it is understood his appointment will also beef up the firm’s engineering expertise as he had served a chief technical officer at Nordic Windpower.

He joins chief executive Makhlouf Benatmane, who arrived at NGenTec in May from engineering firm Converteam, which was bought by General Electric in September, and chief technical officer Nazar Al-Khayat, a former chief engineer at Williams Grand Prix. Benatmane said: “Charles brings a wealth of experience and expertise to our team.”

The executive group was assembled by chairman Derek Shepherd, a former managing director of Glasgow-based temporary power supplier Aggreko’s international division and a main board director for 11 years at the FTSE 100 firm.

NGenTec secured £2m of funding from Amsterdam-based SET Venture Partners and Scottish Enterprise’s Scottish Co-investment Fund in 2010, along with a £800,000 grant from the UK government’s Department of Energy & Climate Change.

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