Scottish Investment Bank backs kite power company

Firm’s approach to wind energy “shows great promise” says Scottish environment secretary

Kite Power Systems (KPS) has secured £2 million equity investment from the Scottish Investment Bank (SIB).

The Scottish economy secretary, Keith Brown confirmed the news yesterday (22 June), following a visit to Kellwood Engineering in Dumfries, where KPS’s latest 500kw demonstration model is being built.

Brown said the company’s approach to wind energy “shows great promise”.

“The company has recently relocated from Essex to Glasgow and this £2 million investment from the SIB will enable it to expand further and demonstrate the latest iteration of its kite power technology in Scotland,” he added.

KPS has developed a power system that features two kites, which fly up to an altitude of 1500 feet.

Both kites are attached by tethers to a winch system, which generates electricity as the winch spools out. 

The firm has been flight-testing its current 40kW system there over the past few weeks and has secured planning consent to deploy the new 500kW power system later this year.

This will lead to a planned onshore demonstration array of multiple 500kW systems within the next three or four years.

The SIB is the latest investor in KPS, joining Eon, Schlumberger and Shell Technology Ventures, who announced a combined £5 million investment in the company in December 2016.

“This very welcome new investment from the SIB is an endorsement of the extensive research and development work the KPS team has carried out and is a further vote of confidence in our technology and our business,” said KPS business development director, David Ainsworth.

“Along with the support of our other investors, this backing will accelerate KPS’s commercial development plans towards deploying lower cost, deep-water offshore wind energy on a global scale.”