Trini solar company buys Bajan Aqua sol
Barbados's smallest supplier of solar water-heating systems, Aqua Sol Components Ltd, is now majority owned by a relatively new Trinidadian company, Solaris Energy Ltd.
The partnership which took effect legally on January 10 has resulted in the 30-year-old Barbados company's rebranding as Solaris Global Energy Ltd.
Solaris Energy Ltd was set up last July by Trinidadian company Mora Oil Ventures specifically to address renewable energy.
This was confirmed last week by Solaris Energy Ltd chief executive officer Allan Luke and Solaris Global Energy chief executive officer Vincent McClean.
Both CEOs said there was still a "substantial" Barbadian stake in the company.
McClean explained why Aqua Sol welcomed the investment.
"There were several large construction projects scheduled to come on stream during the year 2009, of which we were the designated supplier of solar water heaters.
"These large projects, consisting of many hundreds of homes and apartments, were shelved. This threw our entire plans for the year 2009 into disarray and resulted in a revenue shortfall of about 25 per cent at the end of the financial year.
"So when the Trinidadian investors came knocking, we were very receptive to them," he said.
Luke noted that although renewable energy is not attractive in Trinidad and Tobago due to low fuel costs and very long payback periods, it was felt that the fuel supply would not be sustained for long.
"We decided to bite the bullet early and seek partnerships in establishing business ventures in manufacturing renewable energy products.
"We looked at several arrangements globally but finally made a strategic decision to partner with a Caribbean company," he said.
Having met with all three Barbadian companies, he said Aqua Sol was the only company that his company felt aligned with its vision of sustainability.