The managing director of Aberdeen-based Subocean Group was honoured last night for an outstanding contribution to the renewable-energy industry.
Thurso-born John Sinclair received the accolade at the Scottish Renewables Green Energy Awards in Edinburgh.
He said: “This is a tremendous compliment for both myself and everyone in the Subocean team, and a much-appreciated endorsement of the substantial opportunities that are to be capitalised upon in the renewable-energy industry.
“I hope the success of Subocean and that of other Scottish businesses focused on renewables helps people wake up to the significance of the industry, particularly in light of these challenging economic times.
“We need others to follow suit and to consolidate our expertise if we are to ensure Scotland is at the forefront of developing a global sustainable energy future.
“The north-east is at a major advantage in the renewable energy industry by being able to transfer its deep-rooted oil and gas expertise. But we need to act with urgency if we are to successfully position Scotland as a global energy leader and, indeed, for future prosperity.”
Subocean has become one of the UK’s largest market leaders in renewables by carving out a niche for itself as a specialist in subsea cable installation and burial.
The company has about 70 staff and annual turnover of about £70million; around three-quarters of this from the renewable-energy sector.
Morag McCorkindale, chief operating officer for Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group, said: “This is a well deserved award for John Sinclair and one which underlines how the north of Scotland’s oil and gas industry is playing a key role in renewable energy.”
More than 700 people attended last night’s awards.
Westray Development Trust, in Orkney, won best community initiative.
Trust director Alasdair McVicar said: “Renewable projects have figured highly in two five-year development plans generated by the island community to further economic growth and reverse depopulation trends.”
Scottish Green Party co-convener Patrick Harvie won the best politician award.
Niall Stuart, chief executive of Scottish Renewables, said: “The renewable-energy industry has been one of the star performers during a difficult year for Scotland’s economy. All the nominations for this year’s awards – from the smallest operations to the very largest utilities – have led from the front, developing new products, services and ideas.”