AMBER ENERGY (Cardiff)

Origins

Nick Proctor - the company founder -was working at a bank in 2009 and found that the customer service and expertise in the energy industry had let a number of his "banked clients" down. Quite simply, he wanted to help businesses navigate through all the complexities in the energy industry and to provide long-term partnerships that "got stuff done". He was determined that businesses find out the truth behind energy, so they could start maximising their own "set-ups" (buying smart, using smart, and generating their own power to offset against the grids demands).

Our main challenges when starting the business

The major challenge Nick faced during amber’s first few years was having to cover all aspects of the business himself, from building the website to developing strategy. The business has also aimed to stay self-funded as long as possible and has achieved the growth to qualify for the Fast Growth 50 without any external investment whatsoever.

Success Factor

Perspiration and Persistency - The commitment and drive of the team to the vision and mission is the foundation from which everything else builds. In particular the first half-dozen people to join the team had to juggle a number of positions and responsibilities in the early years. Staff now have the opportunity to participate in an EMI options scheme to recognise past contributions and to provide additional motivation and alignment for delivery of the current five-year plan through to October 2021; To be the ‘good-different’ - from the start, amber has been founded on the belief that the key thing was to maintain integrity, to be the best in the industry, to do things in a fully transparent way, to be the ‘good-different’. This is a core part of amber’s culture and a phrase you’ll hear often around the office. Staff strive to be able to demonstrate to clients that they support their aims and ambitions from the start, to be excellent listeners and to demonstrate the value and credibility that amber brings; having fun – amber knows that to deliver excellence it has to have the best people, in the best space, to be their best selves. The firm focuses on providing an energising and inspiring work environment and believe that its people do their best work when having fun together, whether inside or outside of the office. Dragon-boat racing, white water rafting, even ‘cardio-tennis’… the friendships and bonds from these events mean the whole team all go above and beyond for each other and their clients.

The Future

amber is currently in a £1million investment programme that forms the basis of its growth plans for the next five years. £480k of funding has already been secured from Funding Circle and a Welsh Government grant. The target is to grow revenues by over 300 per cent from 2016 to 2021 by investing in growing the size and capability of the team; developing the new teams and product offerings that have been formed over the last 12-24 months to complement previous core offerings; and ensuring that clients are helped to maximise the benefits from new technologies such as the smart grid, battery storage and internet of things.