We are in the midst of solar boom, then why so many companies are out of business?
Solar market is growing @400% growth rate, and certainly we are in the midst of solar boom. In a decade of roller coaster journey the solar companies who are flourishing are different than the market leaders of 2010. WIth annual installation of over 12 GW solar and about 250,000 households are opting for solar installations, we could not find very well established and flourished companies in a such a fast pace of market growth.
The solar market a decade back was dominated by the solar module manufacturers, such as Moserbaer, Indosolar, Waaree, VIkram Solar, Lanco, Acme, Sun Edison, Ujaas energy, etc. A decade of journey these companies should have been dominating the market, however the new age players are much different. The market is typically dominated with the manufacturers as well as developers. In such a flourishing market, how it is possible that many dominating market players a decade back have become redundant, gone out of business, or gone bankrupt. Though bankruptcies are not that good word in Indian market, however in International market many solar companies have also gone bankrupt in such a fast paced market growth. Some of the International companies who file bankruptcy are Q Cell, Sun Edison, Solendra, etc.
We generally see the booming companies, and tend to forget the failed solar case studies. Many of the players lost money in the solar thermal installations adopted as an early part of program, including the Lanco solar. Some of the players who were advocating the thin film technology are also out of business, the example include the Indian players such as Moserbaer, and global leaders such as FIrstsolar, Solar Frontier, Q cells, etc. In 2014, GOI Imposed the anti- dumping duty on the import of solar modules, and many solar projects under development have dented the balance sheets of the solar developers.
While the solar manufacturers, have generally struggled with the price competition with Chinese module manufactures, the solar project developers have also generally struggled with the regulatory uncertainties, frequently changing policies, payment delays, powe evacuation issues, and financing issues. The solar market after a decade is in the consolidation mode, and in the hands of few players, which is not a good sign of growth of this sector.