Andy Ling was named 'Accelerated Growth Entrepreneur of the Year', sponsored by Business Wales, Welsh Government at the inaugural Entrepreneur Wales Awards in Cardiff on Thursday.
After 8 years’ service with the British Army’s bomb disposal unit, the West Wales-based businessman needed a new challenge which he found during three years spent asset managing a portfolio for a leading European wind fund.
He came up with a solution that saves fuel while harnessing the power of CO2 emitted by vehicle engines and 'Perpetual Vehicle-2-Grid Systems' was born. Following a successful seed-funding application, the company is now in a stage of high growth.
Today the company’s innovative, patented systems allow vehicles such as supermarket refrigerated vans, police transport, taxis and utility vehicles to reduce idle times. Energy that would otherwise be lost is captured and stored onboard in a lithium ion battery, before being used or transferred to a grid.
The judges felt that Andy’s entrepreneurial journey and accomplishments in business made him the outstanding candidate in the category of 'Accelerated Growth Entrepreneur of the Year'.
The award was awarded to the individual whose business demonstrated significant growth during the first five years of trading. The entrepreneur should show how they recognised opportunity to achieve objectives, while showing how they built on strengths, addressed challenges, and created sustainable employment, success and growth.
We asked Andy how he felt as an award winner. He said: “Mainly because is that it’s the first year that [the event] has been held in Wales. We’ve been to lots of events and awards held in London, but to win in Cardiff in a Wales-based award when we’re trying really really hard to keep our business in Wales is massively important to us.”
When asked why Wales is a great place to do business, Andy said: “Wales is a great place to run the business because we’re fairly separated from London and from the hubs of innovation where a huge amount of effort is involved with networking and it’s more about who you are than what you can do. We are fairly out the way and isolated and we get to concentrate on exactly what we need to do in order to achieve the results we want.”