By Scott Wright

AN Edinburgh-based tidal energy company is giving investors a fresh opportunity to back the business after smashing its initial crowdfunding target, declaring that interest has been sparked by growing concerns over climate change.

Nova Innovation, which has been generating electricity from tidal turbines off Shetland for three years, raised more than £700,000 from around 800 investors to support its growth ambitions in a recent crowdfunding drive. The drive reached its £500,000 target within a fortnight of launching on the Seedrs platform. Now the company is putting more shares up for sale to capitalise on demand.

Nova said the support has come from ordinary investors amid increased public concern about climate change. It highlighted that the election manifestos of Labour, the SNP, Liberal Democrats, the Green Party and Plaid Cymru all have pledged to invest in tidal power.

Simon Forrest, chief executive of Nova Innovation, said: “In the face of the declared climate change emergency, we are on a mission to transform the power of the oceans across the world into clean, predicable energy. Responding to the growing clamour for action, we are now offering the wider public the opportunity to invest in this ground-breaking green solution.”

Nova installed three 100KW turbines off Shetland in what it says was the world’s first offshore tidal array in 2016.

The company noted that, in contrast to tidal lagoon and barge technologies, its tidal stream turbines sit on the seabed, with no visual impact or navigational hazard.

Nova turns over £3.3million and currently has 30 staff on its books. Mr Forrest and Gary Connor are its joint biggest shareholders, with investors also including former SSE boss Ian Marchant, its chairman.

Nova has so far raised £736,139, for 2.54% of its equity. Having made 2% of the equity available for the initial £500,000 target, it is now releasing a further 1% of equity for every £250,000 it raises.