Solar Panel Companies
Chinese Solar Panel Companies
China boosts an incredible solar panel manufacturing system, covering almost half of the current offering for this niche on global market. If in 2001 China produced only 1% of the solar systems installed in the world, now its solar panel companies occupy top places in solar module production. In 2011, Suntech had a 5.8% market share, while other three Chinese producers, Yingli Solar, Trina Solar and Sungen, had over 4% market share. Jinko joined the top ten module producers, with a 2.3% market share.
In point of thin-film, a new and more efficient type of solar panels, the Chinese solar panel companies are overrun only be an US company. Suntech Solar and Sungen Solar are two important players on the market and as the preference for thin-film panels will increase, it is expected that these companies will increase their production capacity.
Yet, the list of Chinese solar panel companies is significantly larger, with smaller producers taking their chances on local and international market. Furthermore, many of the reputable international manufacturers also have large production units located in China. DelSolar (Taiwan), Evergreen Solar (USA) and Motech (Taiwan) are only some examples of such companies.
United States Solar Panel Companies
The main American solar panel company is First Solar, one of the few companies which offer full services for the solar panel use, from solar panel production to maintenance, finance and recycling for broken panels. The company is the main producer of thin-film silicon panels and the second supplier of cadmium telluride solar panels. German and Malaysian headquarters have also been opened for a better coverage of the European and Asian market.
Another US producer with good results on both internal and international market is Sunpower. Just like First Solar, Sunpower has also developed a complementary side and ventured into solar panel installation. The company however, had to face critical times due to the relatively higher equipment produced and sold. This is one of the reasons for which the company failed to take advantage of the opportunities arisen in 2010, when most Chinese companies have registered significant growth.
Canadian Solar Panel Companies
Canada is one of the recent players on the solar panel market. Solar energy registered a boom in 2009, when incentives have been offered for those switching to renewable energy. Canadian Solar is a Canadian based company with producing lines in both Ontario and China and offices in Germany, Italy, Spain, Israel, Japan, South Africa, Korea, Singapore and Hong Kong. Canadian Solar is responsible for large solar projects in Europe, with major investments in Germany and Italy, and in United States. Its relatively low prices, varied offer and 25-year guarantee for performance has rapidly transformed the company in one of clients’ favorites.
Japanese Solar Panel Companies
The Japanese used to have control over the solar panel production in 2009, when Sharp held the top position after revenues. Sharp is the first solar panel company to produce a 2GW system and the first to reach 35.8% efficacy in a triple junction compound panels. However, the company was not capable of keeping up with the Chinese companies and registered a significant downgrade to 5th position in 2011. Yet, Sharp is still the leader on the Japanese market, sharing clients mainly with their co-nationals from Panasonic/Sanyo. Panasonic has developed highly efficient solar solutions for residential systems.
European Solar Panel Companies
Europe is a large consumer for solar electricity, with over 2% of the total electricity consumed in the European Union is solar and the installed equipment provides 4% of electricity need in peak season. Germany alone owns over a third of the total solar power equipment installed globally. Germany is also the headquarters for the largest European producer if solar panels – Solarworld. The company is still present on the European and American markets, but its products tend to be overlooked because of the cheaper alternatives available.
Other German solar panel companies include Q-cell, Bosch, Conergy, Schott Solar and Sunways. The European producing companies is completed by BP Solar (Spain, with subsidiaries in India and Australia), Isofoton (Spain), Photowatt (France), Photovoltech NV (Belgium), Renewable Energy Corporation (Norway), Solarday (Italy) and Solland (Netherlands).
Solar panel companies all over the world had to face difficult times in 2012 caused by a stand-still in solar investments and a cut-out in governmental incentives. This resulted in lower prices, less profit and many panels left unsold. Major players on the market, such as First Solar and Sun Power announced measures for cutting down expenses, while other 88 companies in the niche are considering similar steps in the near future. Furthermore, Forbes.com estimates that over 180 companies are on the verge of closing until 2015. Yet, the states tend to re-introduce incentives and rebates, thus stopping the market decline.