FORMER SSE chief executive Ian Marchant has emerged as a financial backer of an energy technology company as he continues to add to his portfolio of business interests after leaving the Perth-based utility last year.
Marchant and John Mullins, his former counterpart at Irish energy company Bord Gáis, have both taken stakes in Climote which has recently won a major contract with SSE rival ScottishPower to supply its home thermostat technology to the Glasgow-based company’s customers.
Wood Group chairman Marchant, who is joining the advisory board of Climote as well as investing in the Irish business, has more than 20 years’ experience in the energy sector, including a decade at the helm of SSE, the UK’s second largest energy company.
Eamon Conway, managing director of Climote, said Marchant’s “vast knowledge will be an incredible asset” for the company.
“Following on from our recent ScottishPower announcement, we are extremely pleased to welcome both Ian Marchant and John Mullins on to Climote’s advisory board. Both are renowned in the energy space and their acknowledgement and investment in the company is a hallmark for the product itself, as well as validation of our wider utility partnership strategy that focuses on partnering with utility companies to bring our technology to their customers.
Climote is the brainchild of ex-Honeywell executive Conway and innovator Derek Roddy and has been established to market a patented product which enables users to control their home heating and adjust the temperature from anywhere in the world using smart technology. It has been described as the European rival to Google-owned Nest.
ScottishPower’s deal with the Irish technology firm, which was agreed earlier this month, will see Climote’s technology marketed as “Connect” to the utility’s UK customers nationwide. Climote also has major partnerships with Electric Ireland and Power NI. Marchant has taken on a clutch of appointments on top of his Wood Group role since leaving SSE, including a non-executive position at Glasgow temporary power provider Aggreko.
He also chairs renewable energy project developer Infinis Energy which operates seven windfarms across Scotland and a hydro scheme near Ballachulish. Infinis raised £234 million in its November initial public offering with Guy Hands’ Terra Firma Capital Partners retaining a majority stake.
Marchant has also been appointed to Glasgow-based Scottish Equity Partners investment advisory board.
Last year he also became a director at Cyberhawk Innovations, the Scottish firm that specialises in running unmanned aerial vehicles. He took up the non-executive directorship in the wake of a £1.25m investment which was led by Scottish Equity Partners, alongside the Scottish Investment Bank.
His most recent appointment in Scotland was as chairman of Nova Innovation, the Edinburgh-based tidal energy company. This year Nova designed, built and deployed the world’s first community-owned tidal project in Shetland and then secured a £3.75m investment package to deliver a tidal array at the same site.