08/04/2003

Derry company receive £750k funding package

B9 Energy Biomass, a company developing leading-edge technology aimed at reducing carbon dioxide emissions, is to plough in £750,000 into its business thanks to a government funding package.

Carbon Trust, the Emerging Business Trust and Besassured Properties, bestowed the money on the Derry company to allow for it to broaden its business, exploiting sales opportunities for products in overseas markets - as well as in the UK.

Formed in 1995 to establish biomass as an alternative form of renewable energy, B9 Energy Biomass received the money as part of a much larger UK-wide funding package of low carbon initiatives announced by Prime Minister Tony Blair in February, which will be worth £70 million in combined public-private investment.

Commenting on the venture, Debra Jenkins, managing director, B9 Energy Biomass, said: “Wood has always been used as a fuel and currently provides about 15 per cent of total energy demand - but it has a far greater potential. We have been working to develop biomass technologies for six years and, through this investment, will be strengthening our business to capitalise on the developing markets for renewable energy products, both in the UK and internationally.”

Peter Shortt, Investment Director, Carbon Trust, added: “Carbon Trust’s investment in B9 Energy Biomass demonstrates our commitment to investing in low carbon technologies that can make a tangible difference to reducing carbon dioxide emissions as well as deliver significant capital returns. We anticipate significant growth for the company based on the commercial opportunities that this investment injection will unlock.

“We are keen to receive further proposals from other Northern Ireland-based businesses for investment. Northern Ireland businesses can play a leading role in developing low carbon technologies and, by so doing, reap the business benefits of climate change. Proposals can be submitted via Carbon Trust’s website at www.thecarbontrust.co.uk/foundation”.

Mr Shortt said the investment in B9 Energy Biomass represented a key element of Carbon Trust’s first tranche of investments under the Foundation Programme.

(MB)

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