Top PV Module Suppliers Grab Market Share Gains but Also Target Additional Cost Reductions
SANTA CLARA, CALIF., August 12, 2013ó Quarterly solar photovoltaic (PV) module shipments for the 20 leading PV manufacturers exceeded 5.8 gigawatts (GW) during the second quarter of 2013 (Q2'13). This record-high module shipment volume represents 21% growth from the Q2'12 level of 4.8 GW, according to findings in the new NPD Solarbuzz Module Tracker Quarterly.
When the final results become available over the next few weeks they are expected to show that Chinese tier-one manufacturers, including Yingli Green Energy, Trina Solar, Jinko Solar, Renesola, and Hanwha SolarOne broke their quarterly module shipment records in Q2'13. In particular, Yingli Green Energy's quarterly shipments are expected to have reached 0.8 GW, which would represent a new world record for any single PV supplier.
"Yingli Green Energy has been strongly focused on market share gains over the past four quarters," said Ray Lian, senior analyst at NPD Solarbuzz. "The company is rapidly approaching 10% global market share, and has now become the clear leader in megawatt shipments. The leading solar PV suppliers are now starting to pull away from the pack, which provides strong evidence that the anticipated industry consolidation is finally in progress."
However, setting new records in shipments is not the only tactic being employed. Some module suppliers are prioritizing profitability over market share, resulting in only moderate shipment increases for Q2'13. Priorities for this subset of suppliers include downstream project expansions or market share gains in only premium-price regions.
In Japan, the highest growth PV end-market today, Chinese tier-one manufacturers Canadian Solar and JA Solar have now become the leading overseas module suppliers. However, buyers in Japan remains strongly loyal to Sharp Solar, Kyocera, Solar Frontier, Panasonic, and other domestic brands. Over the past four quarters, these four suppliers have accounted for 54% of modules shipped by the 20 leading module suppliers to Japan.
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