Stuck for something to put on your wedding list? Need a novel idea for a Christmas present? Why not buy someone – or yourself – a wind turbine? Now you can, thanks to Sarah Merrick, founder and CEO of Ripple Energy, which has won the prize for Startup of the Year 2019, awarded by equity crowdfunding platform Seedrs.
Merrick, 41, has always worked in energy. She studied economics at UEA and got a job on graduating with the trade association for electricity producers. “I had no idea my job even existed,” she says. The electricity producers included nuclear and gas, but a feeling for the way the wind was blowing led her to put the emphasis on renewables.
In November 2000 she organised an official visit to the first offshore windfarm in Britain, off Blyth in Northumberland. The turbine was a mere 2 megawatts but this was a watershed moment. It was love at first sight. “I’d only been in the job a month. People were amazed that it had actually happened.”
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