30 March 2015

Focus On: Silvia Villarroya

Silvia Villarroya, PV Business Development Manager

What is your background?

I have a project management and business development background in both industrial and academic environments. I have successfully led research and development programs in several organisations, offering direction on research methodology, research techniques and providing high quality research output in areas of interest including synthesis, materials, biotechnology and polymer chemistry.  I have worked in the PV industry for six and a half years. I joined G24 Innovations Limited as R&D Project Manager and Development Chemist where I was responsible for the research, development and implementation of new materials and configurations to improve the performance of PV modules. I was directly involved in the management of material supply chain, successfully led the bid-writing process for external research funding and taken part in business development and marketing activities.

I was appointed as PV Business Development Manager on the Sêr Cymru Solar initiative in September 2014 to lead Specific’s engagement with industry on PV related projects. My duties and responsibilities involve managing and coordinating the collaborative projects between industrial partners and the scientists at Specific along with creating new partnerships. I am also involved in establishing and delivering technology and product roadmaps in the area of Photovoltaics to facilitate its effective commercialisation.

How has your time in industry contributed to your role at SPECIFIC?

During my time at G24 Innovations, I gained awareness in many aspects of the daily management of a small business.

Being part of a company that is commercialising a new disruptive technology, I learned to overcome not only the technical challenges involved in delivering a robust and efficient product but also the marketing challenges that involved in bringing a new product to market. I was also exposed to many other aspects of the company such as manufacturing, testing, logistics, sales, marketing and finances leading to a good overview of the business as a whole.  

Which challenges are you looking forward to over the next year? 

I would like to contribute towards the implementation of our PV technologies as part of Specific’s vision of Buildings as Power Stations. Our research scientists are doing a great job in terms of research and development of new and innovative technologies. Part of my job is to enable the commercialisation and exploitation of these emerging technologies. I would like to help to deliver PV solutions to the real world. 

Why did you make the change from research to business

I wanted to be a part of the delivery process. I have worked in the research and development area for many years but felt that it was the right time to me to move to the business area to be able to assist the commercialisation of the new emerging PV technologies. I feel that it is very important for someone on the commercialisation side of things to have a good understanding of research environment. 

What aspect of your job do you most enjoy? 

I enjoy talking with industrialists to engage them with Specific’s vision and bring them on board within our research and development activities. I also enjoy having discussions with other team members about the limitless possibilities that we can do in the world of PV from charging a remote control to covering a building with the most beautiful solar ivy.

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Baglan Bay Innovation Centre,
Central Avenue
Port Talbot,
SA12 7AX.

T: +44 (0)1792 606867
E: info-specific@swansea.ac.uk

Content available in Welsh on request by emailing info-specific@swansea.ac.uk