As competitors wipe out, solar survivors will see eventual rewards

Solar Industry

What lies ahead for PV manufacturers that can make it through the current market struggles? Companies that survive through 2013 are set for strong market-share gains, as global trade barriers and increased corporate casualties combine to decrease the competitive landscape significantly, according to the NPD Solarbuzz Quarterly report.

“The increasing globalization of PV demand continues to soften quarterly demand swings,” says Michael Barker, an analyst at NPD Solarbuzz. “This will soon allow production and shipment forecasts to be planned with increased certainty.

“However, in the short-term, margins continue to be under pressure until the market rationalizes at an appropriate supply-demand balance,” Barker adds.

During the third quarter of 2012 (Q3’12), leading PV module manufacturers were confronted with increasing inventory levels (from 66 to 79 days outstanding) and declining shipments (down 7% quarter-over-quarter).

These difficulties occurred because PV manufacturers have been boosting production levels in expectation of a traditional PV second-half boom in shipments, the report explains. However, end-market demand during Q3’12 has yet to support the higher production levels.

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