Search begins for ecopreneurs with big ideas for cutting carbon
Jul 08, 2010
Small businesses with big ideas for tackling climate change are being invited to compete for awards of £40,000 each, as the Shell Springboard programme opens for its sixth year.
Since its launch in 2005, Shell Springboard has awarded £1.6 million to 43 innovative low-carbon businesses. The awards provide a springboard for many businesses, helping them to raise their profile in order to secure investment.
One of last year’s winners was Aeristech, a firm which developed a system that enables car manufacturers to downsize engines cutting emissions and cost without reducing performance.
Since winning Shell Springboard in March, they have secured an additional £500,000 of investment.
James Smith, Chairman of Shell UK, said: “Small businesses are a prolific reservoir of creative thinking on low-carbon technologies. Shell Springboard offers no-strings financial awards to help these businesses get their ideas off the ground."
Speaking as the awards programme re-opened for entry, Bryn Richards, founder and CEO of Aeristech said:
“Winning Shell Springboard was a big help to our fundraising round. It enhanced our brand and helped us build momentum. It was also an excellent opportunity for peer review of our technology and business model. I would urge anyone out there with a good idea for tackling the climate challenge to enter the awards.”
Shell Springboard offers a financial boost for UK businesses with compelling ideas for tackling climate change. These must be ideas which:
- will lead to greenhouse gas reductions;
- are commercially viable;
- are innovative
£320,000 is on offer in awards of £20,000 or £40,000. Last year awards were made to nine businesses from across the UK.
Previous winners include:
- Shiply.com (2009) transports goods in empty lorries on their return legs. Since winning Shell Springboard, Shiply.com has expanded by 200%. It has also just reached a milestone of saving more than 10 million unnecessary road miles.
- Scottish Bioenergy (2009) uses algae to convert CO2 emissions into biodiesel. Since winning the award, the company has installed an algae treatment system at The Famous Grouse’s Glenturrett Distillery near Perth, in addition to establishing a number of partnerships within the whisky industry.
- Oxy-gen Combustion (2008) makes leaner burning motor engines with its Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI). Since winning a Shell Springboard award, it has formed a partnership with Michelin and the Scottish Government.
The deadline for 2010 entries is 5pm on the 5th November 2010. Full details and an online application form can be found at www.shellspringboard.org.