A year-old Keighley solar technology firm is looking to go global after securing a six-figure investment from a regional business fund which will boost the development of a prototype product aimed at countries with hot climates.

Fullsun Photovoltaics Limited is developing the prototype for a high concentrating photovoltaic (HCPV) solar module which it hopes will make the company a major global player providing new jobs locally.

Finance Yorkshire has backed Fullsun from its seedcorn fund and its investment experts believe the business could become one of the region’s ‘beacon’ companies. It will use the substantial funding to develop the prototype product and Proof of Concept.

Fullsun chief executive Hugh Rudden said: “We develop HCPV modules for the utility and commercial markets and our mission is to drive down cost and simplify design, with the aim of becoming the lead supplier to the global solar energy markets.

“Finance Yorkshire fill a very important gap in the market as there is quite a big hole between angel investing for brand new start-ups and venture capitalist style funding for larger, well-established firms.

“We’ve got a very exciting product and it’s great that something like this can continue to be developed right here in the region because of access to the sort of funding Finance Yorkshire offers.

“We are in the early stages, but in a year, once we have taken the prototype through testing, we will be looking to expand the engineering team adding at least 12 new jobs. Longer term, once the company launches into production, we will be looking at very significant growth and expansion.”

Fullsun’s products are primarily aimed at regions with high sunlight intensity and temperatures where HCPV technology is superior to the traditional flat plate silicon or thin film alternatives.

Finance Yorkshire investment manager Graham Davies said: “Hugh has spent 20 years in senior management positions and has brought to market various new technologies and products in the hi-tech electronics markets.

“His chief technical officer Geoffrey Duggan has 30 years industrial experience in multinationals, SMEs and start-ups, has worked with high profile names including Philips and Sharp and has been granted 11 US patents.

“The combination of the duo’s wealth of experience and their passion for this product to be developed here in Yorkshire, mean we were keen to get involved and support the growth of Fullsun, which we hope will become a beacon company for the region.

“We will be working with the company to seek further funding and advice from other organisations, which have experience and connections within the high-sun regions around the world, to support the future development of the product.”