Liverpool based hardwood importer reduces energy costs with £300k solar investment

Posted on 14 Aug 2023 by The Manufacturer

A Liverpool-based hardwood importer is future proofing its energy costs with £300k of hire purchase funding from Lloyds Bank.

Hardwood Sales Limited is a specialist hardwood importer, supplying timber for some iconic projects including Churchill’s War Office, the Royal Academy of Music and The Shard. It has used the loan from Lloyds Bank to invest in 1,000 longi PV solar panels, allowing the business to start producing 65% of its own electricity, becoming more energy independent and significantly reducing costs.

The global company, which is headquartered in Liverpool, is based on a nine-acre site with a newly built 100,000 sq ft warehouse plus a manufacturing plant. Five-day work weeks mean that surplus electricity is often generated at weekends, and the business sells this energy back to the grid – helping grow profits further, while contributing to the diversification of the UK’s energy mix and reducing strain on the grid when demand is high.

The solar panels have helped Hardwood Sales futureproof its energy costs, meaning the money that would have been tied up in rising energy prices can now be invested in creating new jobs and upskilling the workforce. The savings made in the business so far have allowed it to commit to the building of an additional manufacturing plant starting September, boosting future growth prospects.

As well as making cost savings, the solar panels also offer Hardwood Sales sustainability benefits in the form of over 100 tonnes of CO2 emissions saved.

Tony Collins, managing director of Hardwood Sales Ltd, said: “Rising energy costs have been putting pressure on businesses over the last year, and the security that these solar panels have provided us with has been a real relief. Not only have they allowed us to save money on our energy bills, which can be reinvested into the business to help it grow, they’ve also given us a stake in the UK’s ambitions for net zero by 2050.

“Our customers come to us from across the globe, and so it’s important that we show them the work that’s being done within the business to invest in our offering and protect profit margins. The support from Lloyds Bank has put us in a great place to do this.”

Alistair Pike, relationship manager at Lloyds Bank, said: “Hardwood Sales is an excellent example of a business that is invested in its future growth prospects, and knows the importance that making proactive, tangible changes now has for maintaining that growth.

“The business’ latest investment will bring them two-fold benefits, prioritising cost savings while boosting its own green credentials. We’re proud to be by the side of businesses like Hardwood Sales Ltd, and we’re looking forward to supporting them throughout their journey.”

Read more of our Sustainability articles here