The Nand Persaud Group of Companies on Friday commissioned a $110m solar power system at its call centre in Tain, Corentyne.
Nand Persaud International Communications (NPIC) is said to be the first major company in the country to have gone 100% solar and it was lauded by Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo who was in attendance.
Rajendra Persaud, the Chief Executive Officer of NPIC, stressed that his company has always had its eyes on green energy. He stated that they decided to make the move to solar energy because it is now a “cost efficient” investment.
“Recently with the global drive for solar power, we … started to decide to invest in solar energy…over the past years solar has become very, very competitive, the prices are going down, the technology is getting better …It has become very cost efficient”, he said.
Persaud explained that the 12,000 square feet of panels amounts to a 220 Kilowatts solar system that cost US$528,000 and generates roughly 1000 kilowatts of power on a daily basis, which translates to a saving of around $50,000 per day. He stressed that using such a system can make “businesses very competitive” and that it also allows the investment in the business to be recovered in three to five years.
“What we have now, we consume approximately 70% of the power we produce, 30% goes to GPL and to date we have been giving them for free”. The free excess energy to the Guyana Power and Light Inc is because at the moment no meters have been installed to measure how much is being supplied to the power company, Persaud highlighted.
Prime Minister Nagamootoo, who was the guest speaker at the commissioning ceremony, congratulated the directors of the company on going green. He stated that while the company going solar was as a result of scientific and technological advances in today’s world, it also had “everything to do with rice”, making reference to the beginning of the Nand Persaud Group of Companies, as rice harvesters to now being one of the leading companies across Guyana and the Caribbean with investments in several different fields.
The Prime Minister stressed that the investment in solar energy is a “revolution” and it is also in keeping with the Government of Guyana’s vision for a green country. He further noted that an investment of such a large magnitude into going green sets the bar for other businesses in Berbice and the country at large, to follow. He said, “I want to congratulate the Nand Persaud Group of Companies for their innovation, their vision and their foresight…The entire Guyana we hope by 2025 to transition to renewable energy, to clean energy, to cheap energy”.
Nagamootoo further stated that while Guyana is set to become an oil producing country, the investment by Nand Persaud should not be understated. According to him, the traditional sources of energy remain a threat to the environment and as such the need to move away is evident.
Minister of Business, Dominic Gaskin, congratulated the group on moving to solar energy. Gaskin told the gathering that in order for their businesses to continue to strive they should always be able to develop innovative ideas to withstand the challenges that they may face that could affect their cost of production.
“We hear very often the cries of the businesses about the high cost of energy in Guyana, its negative impact on the cost of operating a business in Guyana, today we are witnessing an alternative in the form of renewable solar energy”, he said.
Darren Ramdial, the Managing Director of NPIC gave a brief history of the fourteen-year-old company. He also thanked his staff for their continuous hard work and dedication towards the company. He also made mention of how proud he is of the numerous awards the company has received over the years.
“NPIC was founded in 2002, it commenced its operation with just eighteen reps, one manager and one supervisor and one accountant”, Ramdial told those gathered. “We became the first company to commence a business in telemarketing/communications, introducing this type of industry to Guyana…I am proud to say we still stand strong maintaining the lead with fourteen plus years of experience and staying current in the world of technology”.
The commissioning ceremony saw the attendance of many businesspersons from Georgetown and Berbice. Former Prime Minister Samuel Hinds was also present.