Chairman appointed to Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult

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The Technology Strategy Board has announced the appointment of Colin Hood as Chairman of the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult centre.

The new Catapult will focus on technologies applicable to offshore wind, tidal and wave power. Bringing together knowledge, expertise and state of the art facilities to help UK businesses innovate, finding new ways to capture and use the energy, as well as reducing the cost of offshore renewable energy sources. UK businesses engaging with the centre will be able to reduce the risk associated with creating profitable products and services.

Mr Hood will chair the Board of Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult, set up to help grow the UK’s renewable energy sector. His responsibilities will include ensuring the Catapult team meets its strategic objectives, agreed with Technology Strategy Board, as well as ensuring good corporate governance for the organisation.

Mr Hood brings with him over 35 years experience in the Energy sector. At Scottish and Southern Energy he joined the board as Power Systems Director (January 2001) and later became Chief Operating Officer (October 2002). Prior to this he was Director of Distribution for Southern Electric, having joined the industry with the North of Scotland Hydro Electric Board in 1977.

Minister for Business Vince Cable said:
"I welcome Colin Hood as Chairman of the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult. Our offshore renewable sector has huge potential and is an area that we are keen to promote to boost the economy, create jobs and generate growth. His experience will be crucial in building on our global reputation within industry so that we can compete internationally through technological innovation."

Iain Gray, Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board said:
“We are delighted that Colin has joined the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult team at this important stage as we establish the Catapult. His experience chairing high-profile boards and knowledge of the energy sector will help steer the Catapult team through this crucial period.”

Commenting on his appointment, Colin Hood said:
“The offshore renewal energy industry is in its infancy and the UK has taken positive steps to take the lead. The Catapult will ensure that the UK continues to play a major part in this industry on a worldwide basis. I am delighted to be appointed as chair of this new enterprise, which should derive significant value for the UK”.

The Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult is part of a network of world-leading technology and innovation centres established and overseen by the Technology Strategy Board as a long-term investment that will open up global opportunities for the UK and generate economic growth for the future.

The Catapult will have its Headquarters location in Glasgow (Scotland) and will have an operational centre near Narec, in the North East (Northumberland). The Catapult aims to open for business later this year. It will also build strong links with centres of excellence, such as the European Marine Energy Centre, Wave Hub, and the recently announced marine energy park in the South West of England.

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Notes to Editors

1. The delivery team tasked with establishing the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult is made up of a UK-wide consortium that includes: Carbon Trust, National Renewable Energy Centre (Narec) and Ocean Energy Innovation. The Catapult will also build strong links with other centres of excellence, such as the European Marine Energy Centre, Wave Hub, and the recently announced marine energy park in the South West of England.

2. The Technology Strategy Board is the UK’s innovation agency; its goal is to accelerate economic growth by stimulating and supporting business-led innovation. Sponsored by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), the Technology Strategy Board brings together business, research and the public sector, supporting and accelerating the development of innovative products and services to meet market needs, tackle major societal challenges and help build the future economy. For more information please visit: http://www.innovateuk.org

2. Catapults are centres of excellence that bridge the gap between business, academia, research and government. They are a powerful new element in the UK economy, helping businesses develop relevant and exciting ideas in receptive and invigorating environments.

The Technology Strategy Board will oversee the Catapults. So far high value manufacturing is the first to open, and centres for cell therapy, offshore renewable energy, satellite applications and connect digital economy, Satellite Applications, Future Cities and Transport Systems have also been announced.

3. The Carbon Trust is a not-for-profit company with the mission to accelerate the move to a low carbon economy, providing specialist support to business and the public sector to help cut carbon emissions, save energy and commercialise low carbon technologies. By stimulating low carbon action we contribute to key UK goals of lower carbon emissions, the development of low carbon businesses, increased energy security and associated jobs. http://www.carbontrust.co.uk

4. Narec has invested £150 million to create the UK's national translational research centre for accelerating grid integration of renewable energy systems and catalysing the development and deployment of offshore renewables - wind, wave and tidal energy generation technologies. http://www.narec.co.uk

5. Ocean Energy Innovation comprises SSE, Scottish Power Renewables, Energy Technology Partnership, Advanced Manufacturing Institute (Sheffield), Scottish European Green Energy Centre, European Marine Energy Centre, Scottish Renewables and Scotland's enterprise agencies.

6. Media enquiries only should be addressed to the Technology Strategy Board’s media relations team: David Hulmes, Media Relations Consultant - Mobile: 077799 777921, Email: david.hulmes@tsb.gov.uk or Claire Cunningham, Media Relations Manager - Tel: 01793 442901, Mobile: 07554 115745 Email: claire.cunningham@tsb.gov.uk.

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David Hulmes
Technology Strategy Board
07799 777921
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