Surprise for Gabriel as SunGift win Clean Energy Awards’ top title
Exeter’s SunGift Energy has proven that – when it comes to sustainable energy expertise – the city is leading the way, bringing home the coveted UK Clean Energy Contractor of the Year Award.
Founder Gabriel Wondrausch, who picked up the award at a dazzling ceremony at the Hilton Metropole NEC hotel, Birmingham, was ‘surprised but absolutely thrilled’ at receiving the top gong.
“It was great to be recognised in such a way by other industry experts,” said Gabriel, who founded SunGift in the spare room of his house in 2005 and has since built it up to be one of the most respected solar specialists in the UK.
“You can’t even enter the Contractor of the Year Award – it’s one of those remarkable accolades where the judges decide who should be put forward. So when they announced our name at the end of the night it was a complete shock, particularly as there were so many other highly-respected national companies in the room.”
The Solar Power Portal and Clean Energy Awards ceremony saw the coming together of 600 representatives from the UK’s highest profile solar projects and companies. The prestigious event was hosted by comedian Jimmy Carr.
Over the past year the solar industry has been hit hard, with a number companies going out of business following solar feed-in tariff cuts, but SunGift has continued to operate extremely successfully. Judges were impressed by the fact that SunGift has continued to integrate the very best and latest technologies into installations, showing that solar panels as part of a sustainable energy system are now more viable than ever.
“While many solar installers have dropped out, we’ve continued to research and invest in the newest technologies,” added Gabriel, “showing others that there is a strong future, particularly when solar is combined with other technologies such as energy storage and electric vehicles. This year, we were the first company to install Tesla Energy Storage devices in Devon, which store the energy generated by solar panels for our customers to use when it’s convenient for them. This is the future of renewable energy and it’s wonderful to be recognised by the industry for our part in helping make it happen.”
SunGift’s team of solar experts recently moved into new offices on Christow Road, Marsh Barton, Exeter.
In addition to this top national award, SunGift’s work with Heritage Homes on their zero-carbon developments in Exeter have recently been shortlisted for a South West Green Energy Award for Best Renewable Energy Project.
SunGift is the only renewable energy company in the region to have been named South West Sustainable Energy Installer of the Year three times.