• 30th May 2021
  • Company News

5 Questions as SEM Turns 5

Just like that SEM is celebrating 5 years in business! It’s been quite the journey over the years and we’re sure that the whirlwind is set to continue. We thought that now would be the perfect time to pause and reflect on the adventure so far, so we caught up with our Co-Founders John Jones and Grant Leslie to hear their thoughts.

When you started SEM 5 years ago, did you think you would be in the position you are in today?

When we formed SEM, we always knew that we were onto something big. We knew we had the drive to deliver our technologies and solutions to the market and we’ve always known that we had been on the right track. However, what we didn’t expect is that it would take twice as long and cost twice as much. The COVID-19 pandemic (as bad as it’s been) has worked out in our favour, it’s certainly changed the world’s thinking and in fact the mission statements we have been pushing for the last 5 years are now the front line of global policy.

What was your mission at the outset? Has it changed?

Our ultimate mission hasn’t changed. However, the way we go about its delivery certainly has. Starting as a technology development company, we have evolved to incorporate the full end-to-end solution. Transitioning into the technology development and service company we are today, ensures the delivery of our technologies as a full 360 solution. This was an integral step to delivering our disruptive solutions to their full capacity. When we realised that the money didn’t matter, it became more apparent that the big volumetric carbon savings was something that we could do, and it would help our personal ‘save the world’ mission. The markets we were going into certainly existed, but the by-products that we were creating generated new market potential. Though we soon realised that we couldn’t do this all on our own, through forming partnerships and joint ventures, we’ve laid the foundations for delivering our solutions for the future generations.

In your opinion, what would you class as SEMs biggest accomplishment so far? What makes it stand out?

By far, our new facility in Shetland has definitely been one of our biggest achievements, in terms of capital and technology development. The support from our investors certainly highlights their beliefs in our solutions and accelerates SEM into the growth path. It’s no secret that we – as a company – have found ourselves in the spotlight in the past, subject to negativity and doubt. However, we always pull through as a result of teamwork and determination, bouncing back bigger and better than before. We were born to be disruptors and we’ll always stay true to that.

The company strives to work towards the attainment of the UN SDGs – why is this so important?

Global communities need a framework to work towards and measure how they are progressing to the ideology of net zero and the self-sustaining economy. For us, we need to align ourselves to these global frameworks to measure how we’re performing in our own journey and mission. It also allows us to align each of our value propositions to each of our markets and clients, whilst helping to define our whole supply chain to delivering our value propositions. The UN SDGs are the only driving standard that industry has to go by at the moment, providing an agnostic outlook for multiple industries. 

It’s hard to predict the future, but where do you hope that SEM will be at its 10th anniversary?

In the next five years, we would like to expand our current technologies to a wider global market and have them recognised as the best available technology in their field/market. We would also like to finalise the commercialisation of other developing technologies that are currently in the pipeline, to home in on the agricultural market. With the billions of tonnes of slurry produced from the market, it is definitely an area that we feel that we could make a significant impact on, with our upcoming technology having already been proven to reduce CO2 emissions by 73%. Furthermore, we hope to align ourselves with strategic partners from industry and academia to help deliver our technology on an international level – however we appreciate that this will be a lot of work!