Foresight Group sponsors Conrad Colman’s zero emissions Vendee Globe challenge on Foresight Natural Energy
· Only boat in Vendee Globe to attempt the race with no fossil fuels on board
· Power generation exclusively from natural sources – solar panels and hydro.
· Power storage system using specialist Lithium Iron batteries
· First New Zealander to enter the Vendee Globe
Foresight Group LLP (“Foresight”), a leading independent infrastructure and private equity investment manager, is proud to become lead sponsor of Kiwi sailor, Conrad Colman’s boat, Foresight Natural Energy. Colman is competing in the Vendee Globe ocean race, aiming not only to circumnavigate the globe solo, but also with zero emissions.
Foresight agreed sponsorship with Colman less than a week from the start, having been contacted that week by Colman’s team explaining their need for funding to enable him to file satellite communications reports from the boat during the c.100 day race. Foresight was able to mobilise funds and staff, commissioning new boat livery from specialists Grapefruit Graphics in Southampton, and driving through the night to Les Sables d’Olonne to apply the new branding to the boat which was officially renamed Foresight Natural Energy.
With leading renewable energy infrastructure teams, and strong activity in the Solar and Waste to Energy sectors since 2008 Foresight believes that a strong alignment exists between the business and Colman’s mission to conquer the globe with zero emissions.
In solar, Foresight has raised some £300 million of funds from private investors in its solar focused VCT and EIS Funds and manages the listed Foresight Solar Fund Limited (“FSFL”) which delivers a steady index linked yield of c. 6% to investors, having raised £346 million from leading institutional investors including Blackrock, Schroders and Newton. Foresight is the second largest Solar asset manager in Europe with more than 700MW of operational assets under management.
In Bioenergy, Foresight has invested in 29 waste to energy projects across the UK, mobilising approximately £800 million of capital, and diverting more than 1.5 million tonnes of Waste from landfill every year and generating more than 130MW of clean electricity.
Bernard Fairman, Foresight Chairman commented: “When we heard that Conrad needed funding to cover his satellite communication costs to help tell his remarkable story, we were quick to step in. There is a neat alignment between Conrad’s goal to go around the world using zero emissions and our objectives to deliver robust returns for investors by investing in renewable energy infrastructure around the world through our offices in the UK and Europe, North America and Australia.”
Conrad Colman, Foresight Natural Energy, commented: “It speaks testament to the value of the project we have created and also the power of the Vendée Globe, a spectacle that will reach millions of people around the world and I am delighted that Foresight, a company that comes from outside the world of sailing, can see value for them. Foresight invests in green energy companies and so it is particularly satisfying that I am being supported by a company which shares the same values as me at the heart of their business. They have significant investments in solar and recycling and renewable energies.
Now we have the means to communicate, to participate fully in this race and to share the adventure with the world. We have a great company behind us that has invested in our story.”
Foresight Natural Energy will generate power from natural resources, using solar panels integrated on the mainsail and on the cockpit roof – provided by French company SolarClothSystem. The Solar system can generate up to 350 watts, boosting a hydro generator which generates power from the boat’s motion through the water – provided by Finnish Company Ocean Volt. The power is stored in Lithium Ion batteries, provided by Dutch Company SuperB with storage capacity the equivalent of half a Tesla.
Foresight Natural Energy and Conrad departed Les Sables d’Olonne with the rest of the Vendee fleet on Sunday 6th November and is well placed as the fleet passes Madeira at the start of its long journey south.
We look forward to welcoming him home in the New Year.
For more information contact:
NOTES FOR EDITORS
About Foresight Group LLP (“Foresight”):
Foresight is a leading independent infrastructure and private equity investment manager which has been managing investment funds on behalf of institutions and retail clients for more than 30 years.
Foresight has over £2.1 billion of Assets Under Management across a number of funds, including Listed Vehicles, Limited Partnerships, Enterprise Investment Schemes (EIS’s) and Venture Capital Trusts (VCT’s).
Foresight has offices in London, Manchester, Nottingham, Guernsey, Rome, San Francisco and Sydney.
About Conrad Colman
The 32 year old skipper is the first New Zealander to participate to the Vendée Globe, combining his twin passions for ocean racing and protecting the environment.
About Grapefruit Graphics
Grapefruit Graphics is a sports branding and event management specialist who provides branding solutions to companies globally. Alongside their dominant presence within the marine industry, the branding experts services stretch far and wide from interior and exterior graphics to hull wrapping commercial vessels.
Solar Cloth Systems
Developer of photovoltaic textiles as thin as bank notes and flexible enough to wrap around a pencil, which allows their use on virtually any type of surface.
Oceanvolt offers complete electric & hybrid motor systems with clear benefits compared to diesel motors. The system creates energy while sailing, is silent, lightweight and maintenance free. You can install it to any sailboat between 20-60 ft. whether new or old.
The Super B energy battery is designed to be the safest and most energy efficient battery available in the marine industry. They are tailored to the unique demands of hybrid propulsion.