An Aberdeen start-up is building ambitious roll-out plans around a renewable energy serial entrepreneur’s granite and sandstone wall insulation system.
Orbis Energy Innovations celebrates its official launch on Monday, with a mission to make homes more energy efficient, cut carbon emissions and reduce fuel poverty.
The majority shareholders are managing director Beena Sharma and David McGrath, who started his career as a subsea electronic engineer and worked in a variety of other oil and gas industry roles before launching his first business, SiGEN, in March 2003 to exploit opportunities arising in the emerging fuel-cell and hydrogen industries.
It failed, with not enough business to keep it afloat years before the market was ready, but Mr McGrath acquired all of its assets for another alternative energy-focused firm, ReGenTech, which was later at the heart of a joint venture with Richard Irvin Services Group.
Orbis is the result of three years of work on his engineered wall insulation system, which has been designed specifically for granite and sandstone walls, with help from Robert Gordon University (RGU) architectural experts.
According to Orbis, which has already created four jobs and plans to employ up to 15 people by the end of its first year, the innovative system can cut heat loss by up to 93% and improve structural integrity.
It is hoped the solution can help Scotland reduce its carbon emissions, besides cutting fuel bills and adding value to homes.
Mr McGrath and Ms Sharma, who recently won a place on the Scotland-wide Unlocking Ambition business development programme, run by Scottish Enterprisea and the national Can Do initiative, aim to roll out the technology across Scotland, and then Northern Ireland and England.
The pair said it had already attracted a lot of interest from landlords, housing associations, property management companies and architects, as well as homeowners.
Ms Sharma said: “After three years of development, we’re delighted to now be launching our class-leading internal wall solution system.
“We know from the tests carried out on it by the RGU Scott Sutherland School of Architecture that it can make a significant contribution to achieving our goals of making homes more energy-efficient, reducing bills, fuel poverty and carbon emissions.
“We’ve already had a lot of interest from the people we’ve spoken to and are looking forward to seeing the difference this ground-breaking system will make to individuals, organisations and the planet.”
Ms Sharma’s background is in health, safety and environment work, specialising in behavioural safety. She ha worked in oil and gas, and in construction. She lived in London before moving to Aberdeen three years ago.
There are two other equity shareholders in Orbis and the company has said there is scope for getting more investors involved.
The firm was incorporated last December and has recently secured premises at 15 Carden Place, Aberdeen.
Its focus on granite and sandstone properties, which are notoriously expensive to keep warm, could see it cashing in on a Scottish market of at least 900,000 homes.