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Oxford Photovoltaics Ltd announces new CEO

OPV-2Solar technology pioneer Oxford Photovoltaics Ltd has announced that its co-founder and Chief Executive Officer, Kevin Arthur is leaving the company to concentrate on new opportunities. He will be replaced by Frank Averdung, ex-CEO of Suss Microtech, who will take up his role on 1st July 2015.

Speaking about the changes, Oxford PV’s Executive Chairman, David Fyfe said:

“Kevin has brought Oxford PV from a concept to its current position as the leader in the field of using perovskite as the basis of a photovoltaic technology. The company has just completed an £8m funding round and has shown that a tandem of perovskite on silicon has enhanced efficiency over the silicon alone. It therefore stands poised for ever greater achievements and Kevin deserves much credit for it being in that position.

“We offer our thanks and best wishes to Kevin who will continue to support the company as co-founder and evangelist for our technology.”

New CEO Frank Averdung, a German national, was previously CEO of Suss Microtech, a German manufacturer of semiconductor equipment with several hundred million Euros of sales. Prior to that, he started a business using IP licensed from Deutsche Telecom, which he sold to German conglomerate Carl Zeiss going on to lead larger businesses within the group, first in the USA and latterly in Germany.

Commenting on his appointment, David Fyfe added:

“It is a tribute to our disruptive technology, the scale of the opportunity and the fantastic progress that was made under Kevin’s leadership that we have been able to attract an individual of Frank’s calibre to lead the company.

“After a handover period from Kevin, Frank will concentrate on preparing the technology for scale up and securing the early commercial agreements which will assure Oxford PV’s position as the leading company in the global perovskite solar market.

“We wish both Kevin and Frank every success.”

Oxford PV is an exciting spin-out from the University of Oxford, based at Begbroke Science Park. Its team of 30 PV and Advanced Materials scientists are developing and commercialising a new perovskite-based technology which will enable solar power to become the mainstream fuel source for electricity.

The company believes that its perovskite-based technology will improve the performance of traditional silicon solar panels by at least 20%, revolutionising this $100 billion market and facilitating new multi-$bn opportunities for the generation of solar power. These include BIPV (building integrated PV) where the company’s technology can be coated onto glass to allow large office blocks to generate their own electricity.

The company has recently (March 2015) completed a funding round, raising £8.2m from an impressive range of new and existing investors.

Perovskite is the fastest improving solar cell technology ever seen and Oxford PV is leading the global development and commercialisation.

Joanna Grant