Shell awards £180K to two British low-carbon entrepreneurs

Posted on 11 May 2018 by Jonny Williamson

Shell has awarded two British low-carbon entrepreneurs a total of £180,000 in equity-free funding to help scale-up their game-changing businesses.

Shell Springboard Winner, Seawater Greenhouse, receives a total of £150,000 to support the growth of its ‘cool house’ technology.

Seawater Greenhouse was last night crowned Shell Springboard national winner by Sinead Lynch, Chair of Shell UK, winning a total of £150,000.

And MiAlgae beat five other national finalists to be crowned Shell Young Entrepreneur of the Year, winning a total of £30,000.

Shell Springboard and Shell LiveWIRE enable Shell to support the most promising low-carbon and sustainability technologies which have the potential to play an important part in the transition to a lower-carbon world.

Winner I: Seawater Greenhouse

The London-based 2018 Shell Springboard National Winner, Seawater Greenhouse, receives a total of £150,000 to support the growth and commercialisation of its ‘cool house’ technology that evaporates sea water to create a cool and humid microclimate to grow crops in arid coastal environments around the world.

Charlie Paton, managing director of Seawater Greenhouse, was chosen from six national finalists, out of a total of 125 applicants to the programme.

Winner II: MiAlgae

Edinburgh-based Douglas Martin from MiAlgae was awarded a total of £30,000 as the Shell LiveWIRE Young Entrepreneur of the Year.

The equity-free funding will help MiAlgae to develop its product which uses by-products of the whisky industry to grow micro-algae which can be used to sustainably farm fish.

This reduces the environmental impact of the distilleries while simultaneously producing valuable nutrients at affordable prices.

90% of UK’s low-carbon firms are SMEs

Sinead Lynch, Chair of Shell UK, comments after the awards, held at the Royal Academy of Engineering: “Seawater Greenhouse and MiAlgae are two of Britain’s brightest, most promising innovations to support a more sustainable, low-carbon world.

“Around 90% of all businesses in the UK’s low-carbon sector are SMEs and providing equity-free funding through Shell LiveWIRE and Shell Springboard can be the difference between make or break for some of these companies.”

Nearly half a million pounds (£435,000) in funding has been distributed in 2018, with all six regional Shell Springboard finalists also receiving £40,000 each.

Alongside the funding, the winners of both programmes also receive a tailored programme of business support from Shell. More than eight in every ten (84%) of Shell Springboard and Shell LiveWIRE supported companies are still in operation within five years, compared to the national average of approximately 45%.

The Manufacturing Innovation Summit 2018 

The Manufacturing Innovation Summit brings together Directors, executive managers and heads of business units in an interactive format that sits delegates alongside some of the UK’s most experienced directors and experts from world class solution providers – with an emphasis on expertly-led small group discussions.

When: 20 June 2018

Where: Exhibition Centre Liverpool

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