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AES Solar

Forres based AES Solar was awarded a £55,000 grant from the Scottish Government’s Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund.

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Support during COVID-19

AES is one of the UK’s leading manufacturers of solar thermal solutions and the only solar and photovoltaic manufacturer in the Highlands and Islands.

The firm has grown steadily since being established in 1979. It is a Real Living Wage employer, with a workforce of 19 people, including school-leavers, undergraduates and a graduate apprentice.

The nature of AES’s operations are very much in line with Scottish and UK Government targets for net zero carbon emissions.

Clients include architects, construction companies, consultants and developers from across the UK. The business also undertakes innovative Research and Development projects throughout Europe.

Where possible AES sources materials and sub-contractors locally, enabling them to install and maintain products even in the most rural areas.

The COVID-19 restrictions meant the company had to close its installation division and furlough 90% of its workforce.

The grant, approved by HIE through the Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund, will enable furloughed employees to return to work, mostly from home, and focus on securing future contracts to continue the company’s growth.

It will also enable subcontractors and suppliers to be paid on time, which will benefit the wider local economy.

The Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund was managed by Scotland’s three enterprise agencies on behalf of Scottish Government. There was a high demand for the fund which received more than 5,000 applications Scotland-wide. Grants totalling almost £20m have been approved by HIE to 372 businesses across the Highlands and Islands.