A syndicate of significant Welsh investment angels has completed a £950,000 investment in Swansea-based Marine Power Systems.
Led by lead investor Andrew Diplock, the syndicate of 15 investors has invested £700,000 along with £250,000 match funding from the Development Bank of Wales’ Wales Angel Co-investment Fund. A further £750,000 from private investors has brought the total of the latest equity fundraise to £1.7 million.
Marine Power Systems has also just opened pre-registration for early access to a crowdfunding campaign on Crowdcube due to go live later in June. The campaign aims to bring the total raise to a minimum of £2.5m to support the delivery of a multi-megawatt grid connected and revenue generating commercial demonstrator in northern Spain during 2022 and progress the business towards market readiness.
Formed in 2008 by Dr Gareth Stockman and Dr Graham Foster, Marine Power Systems is revolutionising the way we harvest energy from the world’s oceans. The company is on track to be a world leader in the supply of floating wind and wave energy extraction hardware by having the highest performance and most cost-effective technology available in the market.
Following successful medium scale testing of their fully patent protected marine energy generation technology, the company is now working at megawatt scale to demonstrate its grid connected technology ahead of commercialisation.
Dr Gareth Stockman said: “We are now working at full-scale and this represents the final stage of our testing programme before we are in a position to deliver commercial devices to our customers. The business is already creating significant traction in the market and we have a number of revenue generating pre-commercial projects in the pipeline that will further prove the effectiveness of our technology ahead of delivering our devices into first utility scale commercial arrays both here in the UK and overseas.”
“This latest fundraise represents a fantastic investment opportunity prior to an institutional equity funding round later this year. The continued support of investors means that we’re right at the heart of the green growth agenda. We’re very grateful for their support.”
As one of the most active investors currently ‘approved’ to work with the Wales Angel Co-investment Fund, Andrew Diplock has a growing portfolio of private investments and is a keen advocate of developing start-ups and SMEs in Wales. He said: “With the International Energy Agency forecasting global energy needs to expand 30% by 2040 - the equivalent of adding another China and India to today’s global energy demand - marine renewable energy represents the largest source of sustainable and cost competitive electricity generation. 20% of UK demand alone could be met by marine by 2050.”
“This is a huge opportunity for the UK as part of an island nation to lead the way in this new sector; creating jobs and supply chain opportunities that really put Wales firmly on the global map. With a background in energy, it’s a real privilege to support Welsh SMEs as a co-investor but it is particularly exciting to be working with such a like-minded syndicate of angels who all share a commitment to investing for the benefit of future generations.”
Tom Preene of Angels Invest Wales said: “Marine Power Systems is positioned to be one of a few proven technology providers that has the potential to dominate a large global marketplace.
“There is a real sense of excitement with significant demand for both floating offshore wind and wave energy devices. This is a long-term sustainable business with a flexible and collaborative approach that is investing in cutting-edge technology. That coupled with the highly experienced management team makes Marine Power Systems an attractive investment proposition, particularly for those who want to support Wales’ ambitions for a green economy. As a lead investor, Andrew brings much experience of the sector and has brought together a syndicate of 15 investors to secure the match funding from our co-investment fund and that increases the fire power of syndicated angel investing.”
Established in 2017, Angels Invest Wales is Wales’ leading angel investment network and an integral part of the Development Bank of Wales. It has over 250 registered business angels in a wide-ranging network that seek to provide private equity investment for growing and start-up businesses in Wales.