The Offshore Wind Growth Partnership (OWGP) selected 32 UK companies working in industries such as oil and gas, aerospace and defence for its Wind Expert Support Toolkit (WEST) Pilot Programme, within which the companies will join those already involved in the renewable energy sector.
The programme will support companies with products and services across the full offshore wind farm lifecycle, from sub-sea survey and inspection, material and product manufacture, to safety, maintenance and operational services, according to the OWGP, with two waves of WEST activity starting in December 2020 and January 2021 and a total of GBP 200,000 of funding allocated to support the companies.
The 32 companies, selected from 40 that applied for the scheme, will work with offshore wind and business support experts from across the UK, including representatives from 4C Offshore, BVG Associates, Everoze, Lumen Energy & Environment, Opergy, Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult, RTC North and Xodus Group, who will provide bespoke and targeted specialist advice to their paired supply chain companies.
The programme will provide the needs-focused expert business support, market intelligence, and insight into the sector for both existing and cross-sector supply chain companies, the OWGP said.
“One of the most important roles of OWGP is to help new companies to enter the offshore wind sector. A lack of specific sector knowledge is frequently cited as a barrier to initial entry and global growth. The WEST programme is designed to overcome this by providing access to world-leading experts who can guide and advise companies to enable their growth”, said Andrew Macdonald, OWGP Programme Director.
The OWGP is part of the Offshore Wind Sector Deal between industry and the UK Government and is funded by the Offshore Wind Industry Council (OWIC) with GBP 100 million over ten years to support the growth of UK businesses looking to capitalise on the opportunities in the global offshore wind sector.
“On behalf of OWIC I am pleased to see such a diverse range of companies selected for the OWGP’s WEST Programme”, said Halfdan Brustad, OWIC Sponsor for the OWGP. “This activity, like the others OWGP are providing, is vitally important in supporting both existing suppliers to offshore wind, and also supporting suppliers currently serving other industries to seize the opportunities. WEST will help us deliver against the ambitions set out in the Offshore Wind Sector Deal, and contribute to a green industrial future”.