The investment arm of ESB is leading a €20m funding round for Irish wind energy developer Wind Energy Direct.

ESB Novusmodus says the money will be used for the development of on-site wind projects for large energy users across Ireland and Britain.

WED is involved in the installation of turbines at locations with a significant energy requirement such as manufacturing facilities, hospitals and data centres. It installed its first project - two 2 megawatt turbines - at Munster Joinery in May 2009.

WED managing director Dominic Costello said the investment would create 10 new jobs immediately, bringing total employment at the firm to 20. WED says it plans to invest €100m over the next three years in developing its business.