SPCG, MUL form solar panel JV
SET-listed SPCG Plc, Thailand's largest capacity solar photovoltaic power operator, has announced a joint venture with Mitsubishi UFJ Lease & Finance Co (MUL) to provide rooftop solar panels to large factories and businesses.
SPCG will own 35% of the unnamed joint venture, while MUL will own another 35%. PEA Encom Co, a wholly owned subsidiary of state-run Provincial Electricity Authority, will own 20%, with Kyocera Corporation owning the remaining 10%.
The partners are banking on the potential profitability of on-grid and off-grid solar rooftop cells in the Thai market, particularly for businesses operating large factories.
Wandee Khunchornyakong, chairwoman and chief executive of SPCG, said each partner will bring separate expertise to integrate the skillsets of other companies.
She said the tentative business model for the joint venture is to operate under a lease model with lease loan support from MUL, while Kyocera will provide the PV panels and SPCG will handle construction, operation and maintenance.
Once the business plan is finished, the joint venture is expected to achieve lease orders during the second half of this year worth 50 megawatts, growing to 500MW within two years.
The plan is to primarily market the PV panel leases to Japanese firms with factories or warehouses in Thailand.
SPCG estimates total revenue to grow this year by 15%, excluding its new joint venture business, because of the new operation of a solar farm in Japan and increased efficiency of its existing 26 solar farms in Thailand.
Mrs Wandee said SPCG and its partners in Japan plan to announce a major solar farm development deal in Japan this October at a capacity of 480MW, with a total investment of 60 billion baht of which SPCG has earmarked only 3 billion.
MUL managing executive Koji Nemoto said the group operates the highest solar electric capacity in Japan at around 400MW and it decided to form a joint venture to incorporate the strengths of its partners in Thailand, where the renewable energy market has shown major growth potential.
"We can provide high quality and speedy services to clients, and become a leader in the Thai power purchase agreement market. Our initial aim is to provide cumulative services of 100MW," Mr Nemoto said.
Kyocera general manager Masaki Tamagawa said the company has produced solar PVs for over 30 years and has world class standards to support high-quality solar modules and integrated services for the joint venture.
Mrs Wandee said in the coming years the joint venture plans to develop into a districted generation system for smart cities or the energy technology sector.
In August last year, SPCG launched a partnership with the world's largest inverter producer, SMA Solar Technology AG, listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The deal is for an authorised sales and service partnership covering Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Myanmar. She said demand for solar PVs in those countries is expected to grow to five gigawatts in five years thanks to demand for clean power.