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Case Study:
Hugh Symons Information Management

Achieving environmental goals and reducing costs

Hugh Symons is one of the UK’s leading documents scanning services providers, processing in excess of 30 million images every month. This operation sees their facility in Poole consuming over a quarter of a million kWh of electricity per annum.

As an Environmental Management: ISO 14001: 2015 accredited business, Hugh Symons takes their environmental responsibilities seriously, so investing in a solar PV system was an obvious next step. In addition to the environmental benefits, a solar PV system would help to reduce their operating costs.  

Chris Booth, Hugh Symons' Managing Director, contacted Mypower to establish how solar PV could benefit their business. Mypower provided several options, including those which maximised generation, solar consumption and commercial returns. Following a competitive tendering process, Mypower were awarded the contract to install a 150kWp system. The building on which it was installed is actually three separate industrial units, so although the total install size is 150kWp, it's made up of 3x 50kWp systems. 

Maximising energy generation and consumption with SolarEdge

Hugh Symons opted for a SolarEdge based system. As a premium product, SolarEdge provides several advantaged over a traditional string inverter setup. The SolarEdge optimiser technology helps to overcome issues with shading or bird droppings and provides enhanced levels of monitoring. The enhanced monitoring platform will provide Hugh Symons with the opportunity to optimise consumption of their low cost solar electricity - by changing the operating times of certain plant and equipment to times of maximum generation, for example.

Key facts and predictions

  • 149.75kWp (483 QCells Panels) - installed by Mypower.
  • 155,560kWh - electricity produced per annum.
  • £16,909  - projected first year income and savings assuming  62% of electricity used on site.
  • 13.6% - projected first year return on capital invested, before capital allowance benefits.
  • 4.8p/kwh - equivalent forward purchase price of 3.52 million units of electricity over 25 years including Operating & Maintenance costs.
  • 51.3 tonnes - CO2 emissions avoided per annum.
  • 7.7 years - system payback before finance, tax and capital allowance benefits.
  • £870,008 - total projected income and savings over 25 years after indexation.
  • 66% - saving from solar PV electricity compared to grid supplied electricity at 14.16p/kWh.


The PV system provided 53% of Hugh Symons' electricity needs in April

The PV system provided 53% of Hugh Symons' electricity needs in April, by utilising 48% of the solar energy generated. The 52% of solar energy not used was 'exported' and sold to the grid.  In future, battery technology will increase the self-consumption of the solar energy.

Hugh Symons Information Management

Daily chart showing electricity consumption

Daily chart showing electricity consumption, with solar generation and self-consumption overlaid. This information may help identify opportunities to move time of consumption and make better use of low cost solar electricity. 

Tackling climate change

The 483 solar PV panels will produce more than 155,000 units of electricity each year, which saves 51 tonnes of CO2 from being released into the environment annually. It is expected that approximately 60% of the energy generated each year will be utilised onsite, with the remainder exported and sold to the grid. This means that the system will be providing nearly 40% of the site's electricity needs.

Ready for electric vehicles

Mypower also installed 3x 22kW car chargers, helping to prepare the business for the transition to electric vehicles (EVs). On-site charging facilities mean that EVs can be charged and operated on locally produced renewable energy.

Returning customer

In 2022, Hugh Symons employed the services of Mypower again to install an additional 29.25 kWp solar PV array at their site in Poole. With the extra 75 QCells solar panels, Symons will be able to avoid over 58 tonnes of CO2 emissions every year.

Hugh Symons Information Management

An excellent partner

"The use of technology has always been a major part of our continuous drive to operate in an ever more environmentally sustainable manner. Our investment in this solar panel project has been our biggest success to date in this area. Driven by both our accreditation to the ISO 14001 standard for effective environmental management system, and a personal desire by the senior management team to reduce our company environmental footprint, we continually look for 'greener' ways to operate." 

"Mypower have proven to be an excellent partner in helping us to achieve these goals and throughout the process their professional, expert advice and guidance has been invaluable. At every stage Mypower managed our project flawlessly, from initial contact, through scoping, design, competitive tendering and then the actual installation - everything has been delivered on time and with zero disruption to our business."

Chris Booth, Managing Director - Hugh Symons

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