Coronal and Panasonic deliver an efficient and integrated construction and permanent financing solution - mitigating investment risk and offering customers a way to navigate the complexities involved in a solar project by minimizing the effort required to realize the often considerable economic benefits.
The Panasonic / Coronal Partnership and Solution
Jamie Evans | Panasonic Eco Solutions North America
What is the nature of the relationship between Panasonic and Coronal Management?
Panasonic and Coronal Management have established a relationship that offers the first truly comprehensive solution for solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, from development and implementation through integrated financing and asset management. The relationship highlights Panasonic’s efforts to bring the only end-to-end solution for solar PV projects to the commercial, industrial, municipal, and small utility sectors. The relationship also allows Panasonic and Coronal to fill a critical gap in the solar market, with the potential to bring hundreds of solar projects into production, generating power for our customers, spurring the economy and helping the environment. Together, the two companies aim to develop and manage a large portfolio of solar assets that are built and maintained by a major global corporation.
What are the advantages of such a relationship?
Panasonic and Coronal provide an integrated platform that includes project development, engineering, construction, financing and asset management and results in greater operating efficiency and greater comfort on the part of our customers who share an understanding of the value of solar energy production and sustainability, both on the bottom line and from an environmental perspective. We are committed to developing and promoting eco solutions and with Coronal we can deliver more value for our customers.
Your initial agreement said multi-year – is there any idea about how long the relationship will last? Is there something specific that Coronal brings to the table that Panasonic is missing or needs? What exactly is Coronal’s role?
The Coronal team, with its project finance experience and strong record of investing in the solar sector, brings complete financing and asset management capability. As the commercial, industrial, municipal and small utility markets have struggled to attract the attention of institutional investors, Coronal and Panasonic deliver an efficient and integrated construction and permanent financing solution – mitigating investment risk and offering customers a way to navigate the complexities involved in a solar project by minimizing the effort required to realize the often considerable economic benefits.
When did Panasonic get into the solar business?
Panasonic entered the solar business with the acquisition of Sanyo, which has more than 30 years of history and world-leading products, including a leading solar module business. One primary advantage the company has in the marketplace is our brand reputation and long operating history, highlighted by our 100th anniversary in 2018. This is especially important now, as the growth seen in the solar industry has led to a proliferation of new players, many of which have limited operating history or experience. When facing a rapidly evolving marketplace, customers place value in a partner who not only understands the business, but can also be counted on to be around throughout the entire life of the system.
What projects have you already completed and are there any others on the way that you can talk about?
The management teams of Panasonic and Coronal have collaborated on a number of projects. The combined team is currently implementing approximately 10 MW of solar assets for Macerich, a leading national real estate investment trust. The solar initiative is part of Macerich’s broader sustainability program, which was established in 2008.
As part of the strategic relationship with Coronal, Panasonic also seems to have started an Alliance Program that PermaCity was the first to join. Would you tell us more about this program and what the goals are behind it?
The Alliance Program is a platform that offers program members benefits related to credibility, reliability and marketing and brand resources as part of the combined Panasonic/Coronal platform. The program expands various channels for Panasonic and Coronal and helps accelerate the sales and implementation process.
Please describe a typical project and how the various players fit into the Panasonic / Coronal Solution.
Typical projects fall in the commercial and small utility part of the market. Primary customers are corporations, utilities and government and non-profit institutions, for example municipalities, foundations and educational institutions. Both Panasonic and Coronal work closely with a select group of developers and integrators to both identify and execute projects. Projects may involve local partners but are always managed and led by Panasonic.
We are hearing more and more about distributed energy generation and the Third Industrial Revolution. Can you comment on these concepts and how they may or may not fit with the Panasonic / Coronal business model?
We firmly believe in the distributed generation model and see strong growth potential in what remains a regional and fragmented market in North America.
Anything else to add?
Beyond solar, Panasonic is also active in eco sectors such as energy efficiency, battery storage, building and energy management systems, electric vehicles, lighting controls, and others that will all play a role in a dynamic and evolving energy economic both in North America and globally.
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