More trade for LBA winner

Jim Gillespie from 1st 4 Solar. Picture by FRANNK REID
Jim Gillespie from 1st 4 Solar. Picture by FRANNK REID

A BUSINESSMAN who won top prizes in a Hartlepool Mail-backed competition has enjoyed more success.

Jim Gillespie is the national sales director of town firm 1st 4 Solar which specialises in photovoltaic solar systems.

His firm was one of three chosen as the winners of the town leg of the Local Business Accelerators competition.

Each won a substantial allocation of free advertising space in the pages of the Hartlepool Mail, as well as mentoring from senior figures from the local business community.

Jim said the LBA competition had already helped to increase the profile of the company and had led to him picking up a sale for his product.

He said: “It has definitely resulted in business and I have picked up a case.”

Jim has enjoyed a dream start to 2012.

Last month, he received news of the High Court ruling that the Government could not cut solar panel subsidies.

The Court of Appeal rejected the then Energy Secretary Chris Huhne’s claim that he had the power to go ahead with a controversial scheme to cut subsidies for solar panels on homes.

Opponents feared that if the proposals had been approved, then 29,000 jobs in the solar industry would be at risk.

But three appeal judges decided otherwise and Jim said it was the best possible news he could wish for.