Leeds solar power business wins Africa charity export order
Xerogrid, a renewable energy business based in Leeds, has won a £165,000 contract to supply solar systems that will power mobile clinics in Nigeria for the charity eHealth Africa.
Headed by founder and managing director Ian Emberton, Xerogrid specialises in fitting solar and wind power in difficult to reach locations that are off the mainstream power grid. The business, which was launched in 2015, has installed solar panels in locations in Spain and the UK, as well as in Ghana, enabling people in rural areas to become self sufficient and end reliance on generators.
The contract for eHealth Africa will facilitate semi-mobile, non-permanent health centres in Nigeria to deliver vital health services and supplies to remote cut-off communities, powered by their own solar photovoltaic (PV) panels. The charity is renowned for its high-tech approach and employs big data in the fight against diseases such as malaria, and to prevent disease and infection outbreaks from spreading.
“This is a fantastic opportunity to put the power of solar energy to an excellent use that will create massive health benefits for people in many inaccessible Nigerian communities,” said Ian Emberton, who is a member of the Leeds City Region exporting network ExportExchange.
“Xerogrid is becoming well known in West Africa, where our British branded solar panels, with their warranty and tech support, have established a reputation for quality. We are passionate about empowering people to create their own clean energy and are really excited to be working with eHealth Africa, which is such a progressive charity that is having an enormously positive impact on people’s lives in that part of the world. ”
He added: “Through our involvement with ExportExchange we have also begun to carry out our own freight forwarding, which means we can ensure consistent contact and excellent communication with the client throughout the whole export process, which is particularly important with overseas sales.”
Along with businesses such as Seabrook Crisps, Huddersfield Town Football Club and Taylors of Harrogate, Mr Emberton is one of around 60 ‘patrons’, or experienced exporters, that are part of the growing ExportExchange peer-to-peer advice network. The scheme’s patrons share first-hand experiences and advice with some of the 90 fledgling exporters that have signed up to the free programme.
ExportExchange is backed by the European Regional Development Fund and supported by the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership and the Department for International Trade, and a number of private sector export specialists.