Mar 22, 2012

Top 10 Successful Solar Companies

4 min
  10. JA Solar With increasing margins, JA Solar has a large number of outstanding shares and a strong ability to turn its e...


10. JA Solar

With increasing margins, JA Solar has a large number of outstanding shares and a strong ability to turn its equity into net income. According to a recent Paragon Report, the company's stocks are on the upswing as the industry rallies behind 2012.


9. Canadian Solar Inc.

With manufacturing based in China, Canadian Solar ranks as the sixth largest producer in the world by PVinsights and seventh by Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The company produced 803 MW of PV panels in 2010 and is working on a plant in Canada with a capacity of 200 MW per year. Despite recent share drops, the company is ramping up production in reaction to a spike in European demand.


8. SunPower

High-efficiency crystalline silicon PV cells, roof tiles and panels invented at Stanford University earned SunPower's stronghold on the market as one of the top U.S. solar companies. In April, Total S.A. agreed to buy 60 percent of the company for $1.38 billion and the company has announced plans to compete with retail electric rates by cutting costs in half in 2012.


7. Yingli Green

As one of the world's first fully vertically integrated photovoltaic manufactures, Yingli Green Energy has installed over 2 GW of modules around the globe. The solar energy firm also recently signed an agreement with IBC Solar to supply another 180 MW of multi-crystalline and mono-crystalline PV modules in 2012 as it expands through parts of Europe.


6. RenaSola

As a leading manufacturer of solar products, ReneSola recently completed a 20 MW solar power plant in China, including grid connection. By capitalizing on proprietary technologies, economies of scale and low-cost production capabilities, the company continues to be a part of China's transformation from a manufacturing hub into an important end-user of solar products.


5. Jinko Solar

Employing over 10,000 professionals across over 165 acres of factories in China, Jinko Solar reached a capacity of 600 MW in ingot, wafer, cell and module production. In its short history, the company has become one of the largest manufacturing bases for solar products, and has established a global R&D center with universities from all over to engage in continuous innovation in the sector.


4. Trina Solar

Trina Solar's abilities in mounting PV modules are among some of the fastest, easiest and least expensive in the marketplace. By offering 10-year product warranties and 25-year linear performance warranties, its panels make for sound investments with proven energy performance from tests conducted by states from around the world.


3. GT Advanced Technologies (GTAT)

Displaying some of the sector's strongest financial health, GTAT has grown its revenue by 1,000 percent in the past five or six years. Despite taking debt in 2010, the company expects to see tremendous growth in equity value, offering a type of growth not often seen in the industry with products and technologies that lower the cost of polysilicon.

2. Suntech Power Co.

Chinese super giant Suntech Power is the world's largest producer of solar panels, pulling in around 1,800 MW of production capacity annually. The company has delivered over 13,000,000 solar panels to thousands of companies in over 80 countries. According to the company, China may add 4 GW or more of panels, which will help curb the 2012 glut of materials on market.

1. First Solar

Living up to its name, Firs Solar has been leading the industry for quite some time. Using cadmium telluride in its manufacturing process has allowed for the production of thin film PV modules at some of the cheapest rates on the market as low as $0.74 per watt. It was the first to reduce manufacturing cost to $1 in 2009, ranked sixth in Fast Company's 2010 list of the world's 50 most innovative companies and first on Forbe's list of America's 25 fastest-growing technology companies in 2011.


In an effort to survive in a Darwinian market, due to a glut of supplies on the market coming from China, the company has made moves to consolidate certain research and development activities to avoid a similar fate of Solyndra. Today, the world's biggest maker of thin-film solar panels is working on a number of large-scale projects in the western U.S., and has installed over 3.8 GW of modules in both rooftop and ground-mount applications worldwide.

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Mar 20, 2020

Top 10 ways to prepare for COVID-19

Georgia Wilson
3 min
Energy Digital sets out Gartner’s Top 10 ways organisations can prepare for a pandemic, via effective operational risk management
Energy Digital sets out Gartner’s To...

Energy Digital sets out Gartner’s Top 10 ways organisations can prepare for a pandemic, via effective operational risk management. 

As the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to develop, many businesses are left uncertain as to whether their risk mitigation plan is sufficient. 

In a recent webinar conducted by the research and advisory firm just 12% of 1,500 people believe that their business is highly prepared for the impact of COVID-19, while 56% believed themselves to be somewhat prepared, and 11% believed themselves to be very unprepared. 

“Most organizations have done some pandemic planning but still have many unanswered questions about whether they have done everything they can to manage risks,” says Jim Mello, Senior Director, Advisory, Gartner. 

Establish a preparedness framework

Establish a team that represents all critical business functions. These people will report directly to executive management and are responsible for prioritising the importance of business activities and organise them in tiers for response and recovery.

Monitor the situation

It is important to ensure that organisations monitor the rate in which the infection is spreading and its severity. Many rely on the World Health Organisation for information.

Revise finance

Be sure to revise revenue forecasts and communicate with investors, as well as suppliers in regards to any potential finance issues. It is important to ensure that the business has the working capital to ride it out. 

Ways to ensure this include: working capital checks, seeking loans or government-sponsored financial relief.

Extend personal hygiene and cleaning protocols

It is important to comply with any changes to workplace regulations. In addition, it is important to establish protocols for staff returning from infected areas, as well as extending existing hygiene activities.

Review HR 

Ensure close monitoring of absenteeism rates for signs of problems. It is important to identify critical staff in order to make sure the company can continue to function in their absence and be prepared for up to 40% absentee rates.

In addition to reviewing HR policies and procedures, it is important to maintain a level of sensitivity when it comes to engaging with employees and workplace preferences. 


Establish a communication programme

People can feel out of the loop quickly. Establish a spokesperson appropriate for the situation who can maintain lines of communication. In addition, organisations should establish pre-approved messages and scripts for various stakeholders.

Review the impact on the operation

Although this may seem overwhelming, the team established to represent all critical business functions should identify key areas to consider. It is important to maintain a connection with the reality on the ground in countries affected.

Key questions to consider: is transport functioning? Have holidays been extended? Where can operation continue and where do they need to stop?

Review IT 

IT business functions tend to be relatively well-prepared for business continuity. However, it is important to assess the supply chain for critical equipment and keep extra inventory if required.

In addition, organisations should keep in mind remote data centre management and cloud options for critical systems as well as enabling remote working programs and rescheduling any non-essential IT work prioritising key applications. 

Review pandemic plans to identify any gaps in response

Conduct a preparedness exercise by validating roles and responsibilities as well as recovery requirements and procedures, in order to identify any gaps in the recover capabilities and resource needs.

Review after-action

Following the establishment of a pandemic plan, identify three lessons learned, key observations or improvements for the exercise. After establishing these organisations should priorities the short and long term follow up actions.

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