With the rise of renewable energy market and the government subsidy program in many countries, including Japan. Solar power plants installation rate has been rapidly growing. Resulting from this, Taiwan has had many bidding projects for solar power plants recently that lead to the forecast of 200MW in 2014.
EnergyTrend has an exclusive interview with SIC and Electronics & New Energy Division’s Assistant Manager Justin Lan, one of the leading global developers of monitoring, control and supervision systems for renewable energy power plants, and has the thorough discussion on solar power plant and its future market trend and development in Taiwan.
Since the year of its foundation in 1989, SIC has been engaged in export and import businesses for various products such as packaging materials, construction materials, PCB boards, IT-related components, raw plastic materials, fully finished and half-finished plastic products.
Since 2008, SIC has taken a new challenge of building new businesses, which have been established in the area of renewable energy on Electronics and New Energy. At the initial phase of the business, SIC was just a selling agent for Modules and Inverters. Following the development of the company, SIC started offering its complete services and solutions that include product lines, customer services, and operation and maintenance systems. Moreover, the company SIC got its dealership from three well-known companies: Satcon and Delta for selling inverters and BenQ Solar for modules.
In terms of EPC, SIC provides a one stop-shop business model and solution that covers services such as applications, design planning, financial planning and consulting, construction, and after-sales maintenance. Moreover, since 2013, SIC has heavily re-adjusted and formed its business group to the extent of electronics and new energy. In addition to operating the existing business in semiconductors and new energy, SIC also successfully extended its services to the motor vehicle and cloud server industries.
With regard to domestic market performance, Justin Lan pointed out that “Satcon’s inverter product has a high market share in Taiwan; therefore, with the dealership for Satcon, we have a better grasp of the current major power plants.” Resulting from this, the vast majority of power plants in domestic regions has chosen SIC for their inverters. Followed by the completion of the project and its customer services, the company SIC has locked many businesses together in Taiwan that rank high in the domestic market.
SIC hopes that the operation of its business can be divided into two main principles. The first is to make the company more stable in the area of operation and maintenance, and the second is to continue to expand in overseas markets. Justin Lan pointed that “in the early stages, international solar inverter manufacturers tend to implement low-cost sales strategies into the Taiwan market, but charge high-cost of repair warranty as a consequence.” Resulting from this, Taiwan has many “Orphan Power Plants.”” He continued to point out that “Satcon occupies high and up to 60% market share of inverter in Taiwan; therefore, SIC could easily grasp and understand what current power plant problems are due to high domestic project. With the above advantages in the market, SIC holds a better position in the area of operation and maintenance.”
As far as the overseas market this year, Japan’s fast-growing plant project is a trigger point for SIC to prepare for entering the market. Justin Lan pointed out that “in addition to selling the modules, lead frames, consultancy, and consultation services, SIC is also a business developer and a bridge between customers. In addition to the Japanese market, SIC has chosen the Southeast Asian market as a region to expand in. So far, SIC has received orders from Thailand and Malaysia .
Many domestic manufactures face many challenges during the construction of the plant. If they work with corporations, there is the need to have the ability to reach the goal of every stage of construction. If they do not, the initial cash flow and huge spending will be a challenge. From EnergyTrend’s observation, not only in Japan, the Asia Pacific region this year shows a healthy growth in construction projects. SIC has accumulated experiences from past successful cases and managed to cultivate professional consultants and a construction team. If SIC can take advantage of the 2013 boom in the Asian market, EnergyTrend holds a strong belief that SIC’s one-stop shop business model can contribute to the subsequent development of the company.