Global single-phase inverter market increased by 11GW in 2018
While the world grid-connected three-phase PV inverter shipments were slightly down at 93,427 MW, shipments of the single-phase segment increased by 11.2 per cent to 11,098 MW last year. The growth has seen a strong rise due to strong demand for residential PV across the globe. SolarEdge and SMA, which remained the No. 1 and No. 2 single-phase inverter supplier respectively, followed by Growatt in third place. Growatt, a Chinese inverter brand which focuses on rooftop solar inverter solutions and has been gaining in market share for the past three years, is close to challenging SMA in its second place position. According to the Photovoltaic Brand Lab (PVBL), Growatt is the No. 1 residential inverter brand in China.
According to IHS Markit, there is an apparent growth transition from utility-scale solar farms to distributed solar installations. This process has already happened in the US as well as Europe and China. As a matter of fact, the installation rate of new utility-scale solar farms in Germany is currently very limited, leaving room for smaller solar systems for residential and commercial use to be developed. Another trend in rooftop solar is the self-consumption model, which means solar storage solutions will play an increasingly important role in this sector.
As the growth momentum of utility-scale solar weakens, inverter companies are looking at the rooftop market for higher growth. However, the business landscape of the rooftop solar sector is quite different. Rooftop solar systems are widely distributed, and thus product reliability and servicing capability really matter. Customers prefer inverter companies that provide high quality products, local after-sales service and online service. (mfo)
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