Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 24 September 2014

Apple signs up Coleraine company to harvest rainwater

Rain Harvesting Ireland is to provide its rainwater harvesting system for Apple
Rain Harvesting Ireland is to provide its rainwater harvesting system for Apple

A Coleraine firm has taken a significant bite out of the rainwater harvesting industry by securing a deal with computing giant Apple in Ireland.

Rain Harvesting Ireland (RHI) has just won business worth an undisclosed sum to provide its rainwater harvesting system for Apple’s environmental conservation strategy.

It will facilitate the expansion of American computer giant’s operation in Cork.

The company currently supplies its systems to private and public sector clients in Britain, the Republic and Northern Ireland, including a rainwater harvesting system for Titanic Belfast’s toilets.

RHI managing director Jonathan Coyle said the deal was a “terrific endorsement” for the company.

He added: “This is an immensely significant and encouraging contract for us because it represents a terrific endorsement by one of the world’s biggest technology corporations.

“I believe we secured the business because of our passion for delivering bespoke systems to clients based on our experience and expertise in developing cost-effective and cutting-edge solutions.

“The solutions we offer are backed by our commitment to providing market-leading service and after-sales support.

“This contract with Apple will be extremely important to our developing export marketing activities in the Republic and other parts of the world,” he added.

He also paid tribute to the assistance offered by Invest NI to help secure the deal. It provided £18,686 towards research and |development costs of £26,915.

“Invest NI’s guidance and practical assistance have been critically important to the development of the business and our recent and successful move into export markets.”

Des Gartland, Invest NI’s North West regional office manager, said: “We have worked closely with this progressive and ambitious company in the development of its impressive technology, particularly in the conservation and recycling of rain water, a rapidly developing market opportunity.

“The company is now marketing its know-how and technology very professionally in export markets and is beginning to see success from its commitment to sales outside Northern Ireland,” he added.

RNI’s systems at the Titanic Belfast building filter rain collected from its 3000 square metre rooftop.

The water is then used to |service the premises’ many toilets used by thousands of people daily, resulting in “significant” savings.

The harvested rainwater is used to replace mains water for toilet flushing within the building but in rare times of low or no rainfall, the system automatically changes over to mains water supply, before reverting back when rain resumes.

RHI has received a range of Invest NI assistance in the development and marketing of its technology and products including an innovation voucher, R&D support, part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund, technical and design support in the development of the new system, and assistance for export marketing.

Apple announced the expansion of its European headquarters in Cork in 2012, including the creation of 500 new jobs.

Factfile

Most of us are never too happy to see the rain — but Rain Harvesting Ireland has put Northern Ireland’s showers to good use by inventing rainwater harvesting |systems.

One of its systems is in use in Titanic Belfast, where the rain water is collected and then used to flush toilets at times of high rainfall.

The visitor attraction reverts to mains water at times of low or no rainfall.

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