GCL System Integration Technology Co., Ltd. (GCL-SI), one of the world’s largest solar energy companies, recently announced its investment in Vina Cell Technology Co., Ltd., a Vietnam-based solar cell manufacturer, in trade for up to 600MW production capacity. This was a remarkable move GCL-SI took to strengthen its competitive edge and to be better poised for wider opportunities in the US and European markets.
In the deal, GCL-SI will provide solar cell production equipment, whereas Vina offers plant, supporting facilities along with an experienced management team. According to the terms, of Vina’s annual capacity of 600MW, 330 MW will be dedicated to GCL-SI. This comprises exclusive use of Vina’s PERC (passivated emitter rear cell) facilities, an upgrade technology for standard AL-BSF solar cells. In addition, GCL-SI enjoys privilege over the remaining annual capacity of 270 MW, which will be locked up for GCL-SI with an advanced notice. This is, therefore, an outsourcing strategy tailor-made to GCL-SI and the company expects substantial supply reinforcement to support its fast expansion in both domestic and international markets.
Shu Hua, president of GCL-SI, commented: “The investment not only provides GCL System with cost advantage, but also helps streamline our supply chain by adding cell production into the system. The PERC capacity in particular helps ease current shortage of high-efficiency photovoltaic modules in the Chinese market.”
The company’s leadership team sees this investment as a strategic move to break into the US and European markets. GCL’s Chairman Zhu Gongshan earlier this year indicated similar intention on 2016 Chinese Clean Energy Collaborative Forum, by encouraging Chinese solar energy companies to “team up to march overseas and to gain a more advantaged position in foreign markets”. In fact, this year records a fruitful milestone for GCL System’s global expansion, in which it successfully captured the Australia market with its E-KwBe model and hammered out partnership with Enmax in Thailand.