INDUSTRY:Solar and energy efficiency, hot water heaters.
INNOVATION:Being Australia’s leading evacuated tube solar hot water supplier is no easy feat. But that’s just what Apricus Australia is. Evacuated tube solar collectors are highly energy efficient and becoming popular among both residential and commercial business clients, the company’s marketing co-ordinator, Brendan Graetz, says. “In simple terms, it’s a technology for solar hot water,” he says. “Standard ones have been around 60 to 100 years. But evacuated ones designed in Australia ... are an innovative way to capture the sun’s energy and transfer that to water. It’s really efficient because it works off the UV instead of just radiant heat. Many others work well when there’s sunshine but when not, efficiency drops off.” Apricus Australia was started in 2005 by Chris Taylor and it now supplies more than 30 countries. The company made the BRW Fast 100 in recent years and now makes the top 30 innovators list for developing a unique product for one of the largest plumbing wholesalers in Australia earlier this year. “We started off as a small operation out of Chris’s garage in Sydney ... initially the customer base was SMEs and then we transitioned to servicing major national plumbing wholesalers. The turning point came last year when the company was approached by one of Australia’s largest plumbing wholesalers, which he declines to name, to produce an exclusive version of the evacuated tube solar hot water product. “While they own the brand, it puts our product on consistent display and promotion in all stores across Australia,” Graetz says.
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