Tag Archives for Energy

Tony’s journey to the centre of the earth

An oil well consists of pipe cemented into a d...Image via WikipediaTony Batchelor is the founder of Earth Technology which sinks pipes 70m into hot rocks which offers a clean source of energy which can be used to cool as well as heat buildings.

Batchelor went for a trade investment and Sir Robert McAlpine took a 25% stake in the business in 2006.  Sales are forecast to rise from £8million in 2008 to £20million by 2011.  Not the sort of growth to interest VCs but it has been tough getting the technology to work (funded by creating new deep drilling technology for the oil and gas industries) and now the challenge is about how to get the business to work.

Would growth be higher with new management and a VC or will McAlpine be happy to stand back whilst the holes are drilled – hopefully in the earth and not in the balance sheet?

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Veridian Solar wins national award

It was good to hear from Martin Davies that his latest start-up, Veridian Solar, is doing well. Viridian Solar was named the Building Entrepreneur of the Year at the biggest construction industry award event – Building 2008. Veridian has designed solar panels which are easy to install as part of a new build in a house.

It is good to see successful entrepreneurs going for a second deal. Although not as hungry as the first time they are not as raw. Will they be raising VCs funds this time or, as with last time, grow from cash generated? I guess it all depends as their first business was high margin technology whereas this second time round, it will be a lower margin business. Let us hope that the building industry pays promptly and allows them to fund growth internally. Will the major builders be willing to rely on a young company for such an important component of a house as part of the roof?

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