Why awards matter
November 11, 2011
This week we announced a great double header for Gaia-Wind: we were pointed out as one of the fastest growing “Cleantech” companies in Europe, coming in at no 5 on a list of thirty. At the same time we found out we had been shortlisted for the Scottish Renewables Green Energy Award for business growth. Last year we were named Most Promising Emerging Business by the Hillington Innovation Awards.
Does all of this matter? Surely what counts is: Are we making and selling a good product? Are we making a decent margin? Are we set up for growth? There is no doubt that these are killer questions for a business like ours.
But we are not operating in a vacuum – Gaia-Wind is part of a relatively new industry, at least in the form and scale of ambition which the Scottish, UK and other governments demonstrate; and we are in at the birth of this renewables revolution. The small wind turbine sector operates in a highly competitive environment. We compete, not just among our peers but against other types of energy - renewables and otherwise.
We are trying to grow our sector in the midst of a maelstrom of argument, debate (sometimes quite heated) and highly polarised views about how and whether the industry should be supported; is the technology really efficient?; should governments back another horse? Are wind turbines a blight or a beauty? (guess my view).
So, this is where awards and competitions come in. They throw a welcome light on best practice, best in class and provide a view of products and services which is a little more objective than companies marketing material. These awards recognise the effort and hard work put in by renewables companies in what, in some respects is still a fledgling market. They help to put the industry in the limelight and to an extent also stimulate competition. This is good for our customers and for the industry as a whole.
Transparency, competition and encouragement of the best: all great outcomes for an industry trying to demonstrate its worth.
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