LEP investment helps Aeristech boost growth plans

Developer of new turbo technology for the automotive industry, Aeristech has supercharged its growth plans thanks to the support of a five-figure grant.

CWLEP Growth Hub’s Jaymie Thakordas (centre) with Bryn Richards & Asuquo Andah (both Aeristech).
CWLEP Growth Hub’s Jaymie Thakordas (centre) with Bryn Richards & Asuquo Andah (both Aeristech).

Warwickshire-based Aeristech has been developing electric superchargers for nearly a decade, working with academic institutions and industry.

The company’s concept is reportedly attracting interest from a range of automotive manufacturers, including OEMs and Tier One suppliers, following years of work in proving the concept that was developed by founder and chief technical officer, Bryn Richards.

Aeristech has invested £66,000 in a new test cell facility at its Kenilworth HQ that is helping it to run its most comprehensive assessments yet – providing full data on how the technology would perform throughout the lifetime of a vehicle.

The firm has been assisted by the Coventry and Warwickshire LEP Growth Hub in the successful grant application of £26,000 through the Warwickshire County Council fund.

That helped to kit out the test facility with the latest equipment which has already led to three new jobs being created, taking the company to 18 staff. The business now plans to take on one new member of staff a month for the next year.

By 2020, the technology could be ‘on the road’ within a vehicle and would help to reduce emissions, without compromising on performance.

Self-confessed ‘petrol-head’, Bryn Richards explained: “My background is efficiency, combustion and CO2 emissions in power stations, so automotive supercharging and emissions was a field I could access.

“I started to engage universities in studies to investigate the feasibility of electric turbocharging as a cutting-edge but, ultimately simpler, potential solution. So that’s what got me started. By my nature, I am quite risk averse and quite sceptical but I believed in the concept and decided to take the plunge.”

Originally based out of an office at Birmingham City University and South Wales, Aeristech attracted investment from a range of bodies around the UK, including Angel investment and Venture Capital.

Richards continued: “That was the real catalyst for us to grow and we moved here in 2010.

“The beauty of this area is the number of small manufacturers and engineering firms who we’ve been able to call upon during the prototype phase.

“The support from the Growth Hub has been invaluable. They approached us pro-actively to see if they could help us and the work we’ve done with Jaymie and the team has accelerated our plans.

CWLEP Growth Hub account manager, Jaymie Thakordas commented: “It has been great to work with Aeristech and it promises to be another great success story for our region’s automotive engineering sector.

“The support is here for companies who want to grow and we can help to speed up that growth – which is great news for the individual business but also for the wider economy.”