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Ghent Volvo workers invited to invest in solar panels

Over the next few months vehicle constructor Volvo is to install no fewer than 15,000 solar panels on the roof of its factory in the East Flemish city of Ghent. In order to help finance the project Volvo has asked its 6,000 employees to invest in the scheme. This would be in the form of a so-called crowd-lending in which the employees would lend money to start the project up and 6 years later would receive their money back with interest.  

The Flemish Energy Minister Bart Tommelein (liberal) is enthusiastic about the scheme. Mr Tommelein put into place the first of the 15,000 solar panels. The rest should be on roof of Volvo Car Ghent by the end of the year.   

Once operational, the solar panels will provide around 5% of the factory’s energy needs and will save the company 200,000 euro/annum on its electricity bill.  

Volvo and the energy producer Eneco are looking for workers at the Ghent factory that to lend between 250 and 1,000 euro to get the project started up. After 6 years they will get their money back plus 4%/annum gross interest.  

All those that work at Volvo Ghent will receive a letter in the coming days with more details about the crowd-lending in the coming days. The investment is not 100% without risk. The exact risk levels will be communicated soon.

Volvo Car Ghent hopes to be completely climate neutral by 2025. There are currently also three wind turbines on the site and a heating network.