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EQ In Exclusive Conversation With Mr. Chiranjeev Saluja – Founder & Managing Director At Premier Energies

EQ In Exclusive Conversation With Mr. Chiranjeev Saluja – Founder & Managing Director At Premier Energies

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EQ In Exclusive Conversation With Mr. Chiranjeev Saluja – Founder & Managing Director At Premier Energies

1. Proposed BCD on Module/Cells Import in India…What are your views on this

 

Introduction of BCD will encourage investment in the solar manufacturing sector and facilitate creation of at least 10GW of module capacity and about 5 to 10  GW of cell capacity additionally in the coming  2 to 3  years. These investments will ensure creation of at least 20000 new jobs directly and indirectly.

The new BCDs should at least last for 5 years as the technology of solar we have seen in the past rapidly shifts/changed i.e. on an avg. every 4 to 5 years basis.

However the Major Raw material cost are still in control of Chinese. Until unless we are not manufacturing the raw materials in India the price pressure will persist.

Indian manufacturers should take this opportunity of trade to improve their manufacturing capability not only for solar modules and cells, but we should also focus on other Raw materials such as Wafers , back sheet, glass, junction boxes and aluminum frames which are predominantly imported by the manufacturers as part of their supply chain requirements.

2. Please share your Product Road Maps – Pricing, Technology …

 

  • Premier energies’ new module line of 750 MW p.a is capable of handling various cell sizes i.e M2, G1, M4, M6, M9, M10 & M12, right from 156. to 210mm. We shall be able to offer industry leading 500+Wp solar panels.
  • Also our Cell line comes with a Universal texturing machines which enable us to produce Poly and Mono Perc cells in the same line with minimal downtime.

Technology & Trend:

  • Cell technology: Multi will remain for several years but mono is clearly continuing its triumph.
  • Wafer size trend: Wafer sizes are increasing for mono and multi, for multi sizes 158.75-161mm will prevail, for mono, 182mm and 210mm will become standard.
  • PERC and derivative are – and will be – the ruling cell technology for a long time to come. Bifacial cells are gaining market share.
  • Cell bus bar technology: Multi bus bar (>9 BB) technology is replacing 5BB, gain is significant when combined with round wire module interconnection.

Premier Energies is well prepared for industry leading technology trends for many years to come.

Premier Energies Product Road map: Cell

Premier Energies Product Road map: Module

3. World Market Scenario and its impact on pricing and availability of modules in this year. Expected Pricing & Availability in this year and next year ?

  • It is very tough to predict the market scenario in short term because the price of key raw materials is highly volatile. In the 3rd and 4th quarter of FY 20-21, we saw an exponential rise in the cost of glass which subsequently crashed in the last week of March 21, citing the reason as ‘low demand’ while a few weeks prior to that, Chinese suppliers were swamped with orders which led to the price rise in the first place.
  • Coming to wafers, there has been price rise of over 100% for poly crystalline in the last 2-3 months which is being attributed to excessive demand from India since rest of the world has stopped using Poly modules. Currently there is a shortage of modules in the market due to year-end pressures and the covid pandemic but we expect the situation to ease gradually in the next 3-4 months. Predicting the price is not something that we’d speculate in at the moment.
  • After the imposition of BCD, the costs may go up or the producers in China may decide to reduce the raw material prices by some extent due to demand adjustment in the beginning of FY 22-23.

4. What is the likely price trend, availability trend of solar modules in upcoming quarters?

  • Same as Above

5. How much modules have you supplied to India till now, what is the target/expectation in this year and next year?

More than 1.5GW of modules has been supplied till date in India. And our target is to supply approx. 1 GW per year next year onwards

Kindly enlighten our readers on the performance of your modules in India in various geographic locations, customer feedback.

  • We have been producing modules since 1995 and our modules have used in various applications like, ground mount, rooftops, solar pumping system, floating solar, canal tops, etc. This exposure to various applications has given us the opportunity to continually add to our product portfolio and to make our product robust for different kind of environments. Our products are well accepted in India as well as exported to 30 countries across Asia, Europe, Africa & North America. We expect the performance will increase significantly as we have put up a new advanced cell & module line recently, which is capable of handling various cell sizes i.e. M2, G1, M4, M6, M9, M10 & M12.

 

6. Present some noteworthy projects, case studies of solar plants built using your solar modules

  • Canal top.
  • 100MW NLC.
  • More than 35000 solar pumps across Nation, plz refer website for more.

7. What are the new technology innovations in Solar Modules, Logistical aspects usage of larger format modules?

  • BSF Cells: With an outdated technology & low efficiency the market share shall decrease over a period of time.
  • PERC and derivative are the currently ruling cell technology due to its efficiency compared with BSF. And its market share is expected to increase further.
  • Newer technologies like HJT (Heterojunction) will have small market share at present due to complicated construction and process leads to high cost. However in near future it is expected to have increase in market share due to its high efficiency.
  • Indian market requires reliable & low cost technology, where PERC seems to be most suitable choice in coming years.
  • Since wafer size and technology is dynamically changing, newer technology like HJT can be adopted in the future.
  • It’s too early for Indian market to comment on possibility of mass scale demand for large format modules. World is exploring on upcoming challenges of logistic & MMS for the larger format modules and will get know on when it becomes available in India.

8. What are your plans to ramp up or set up or grow your manufacturing base in India in light of the Proposed BCD?

  • Currently we have set up a new advance cell & module line capacity of 750MWp.a each in Hyderabad.
  • And we are planning to put up another 1.1GW of cell line this year
  • Our target is to ramp up 1GW of cell & Module line every year to achieve 3GW cell & Module line capacity.

9. Please describe in brief about your company, directors, promoters, investors, its vision & mission

Over 25+ Years of Excellence

  • Premier Energies (Formerly Premier Solar System) is one of the oldest players in the Indian solar industry with over 25+ years of experience. Incorporated in 1995, Premier Energies is an integrated solar solutions company and provides turnkey engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services for setting up solar power plants. It has also forayed into segments such as solar power generation and manufacturing of solar photo voltaic cells and solar products
  • The company is managed by Mr. Surenderpal Singh Saluja and Mr. Chiranjeev Singh Saluja, who have an experience of over 25 years years across various business verticals
  • The Company is one of the leading solar PV module manufacturers in India with a track record of more than two decades and provides the following services:
  • Manufacturing: Operates a 750MW of Cell manufacturing & 1250 MW automatic solar module manufacturing which can produce both, polycrystalline and mono PERC modules. And It is in the process of expanding its module facility by 2000 MW and 1,875 MW of solar photovoltaic (PV) cell manufacturing facility
  • IPP: Operates ~28 MW solar power projects
  • EPC: Provides EPC services for ground mounted and rooftop solar power projects and has executed 500+ MW projects till date It also provides upgradation services for transmission line and substation
  • Solar products: Offers solar products such as solar water pumps, lanterns, lighting systems and solar e-vehicles

Management : –

 

Surenderpal Singh – Chairman

A visionary, Surender Pal Singh is an eminent energy expert and accomplished business leader with over 40 years of rich industrial experience. His work states achievements in both conventional as well as non-conventional power projects. Known for his resourcefulness and deep knowledge on Solar, he has been conferred with national and international awards such as the International Project of The Year from Renewable Energy World, USA 2013, National Awards for Excellence in Renewable Energy for Rural Electrification from World Federation of CSR Professionals, 2015, Udyog Bharti & Udyog Patra awards from the Vice President of India. A mechanical engineering graduate from Dharwad University, today he oversees operations and finance of the organization in addition to mentoring the young leaders.

 

Chiranjeev Singh Saluja – Managing Director

He is one of India’s 100 Most Influential Solar Business Leaders and a visionary who transformed the company from a solar enterprise to an integrated renewable energy solutions provider. Steering the company from a 5 MW production capacity in 1995 to 500 MW in 2018, he is now leading Premier Energies towards growth by expanding the production capacity to 750 MW solar cells and 1.2 GW solar modules.

He is a Founding Member of Premier Solar Power Tech and has built over 500+ MW of EPC and 28 MW of IPP. He serves as a Director on board for over 10 companies in the Solar Manufacturing and IPP space and the All India Solar Industries Association (AISIA). He is a member of the Governing Council of Indian Solar Manufacturers Association (ISMA). He holds a bachelor’s degree in Engineering from Osmania University, Hyderabad. He is responsible for spearheading the group’s growth strategy and has around two decades of experience in the renewable energy vertical academically

 

Sudhir Moola Reddy – Executive Director

He has over 7 years of experience in the solar industry and has worked with PwC, USA At Premier, he is responsible for solar power plant development, financing, design and engineering and PPA negotiation

  1. Revathi Rohini – Executive Director

She possesses over two decade of experience in commercial and direct & indirect taxation At Premier, she is responsible for taxation and compliance

Niyathi Madasu-Director

She has over 16 years of experience in Talent Management, Leadership Consulting & Organization Development. She is responsible for leadership framework development, psychological profiling & assessment, and design of talent management frameworks. Niyathi holds an MBA in HR from the Symbiosis Centre for Management and Human Development, Pune and an executive certification in organization development from ISB Hyderabad.

Jasveen Saluja – Director

She possess over a decade of experience in business development and serves as a director with Premier Energies. She’s been a serial entrepreneur and comes in over a decade of experience in running her own company specializing in interior design. With an astute sense of business, she is responsible for business development, procurement, and project planning and government liaising. She has a degree in commerce and fashion designing.

Vishnu Hazari – COO

He brings over 14+ years of rich consulting experience in BFSI, Pharma and Healthcare sectors, having worked at JP Morgan Chase, Anthem, Infosys, Cognizant and Deloitte. He holds a MS (Mechanical Engineering) from Western Michigan University. At Premier Energies, Vishnu is responsible for managing the entire spectrum of operations of the manufacturing division

Priyadarshan Bhatewara- Chief Financial Officer

He has 15 years of experience in Corporate Finance, Project Finance, Project Management, Business Development, and Financial Analysis of Climate Change Projects. He has worked in Hydro Power, Thermal Power, Wind Power and Solar Power projects. He has expertise in closing Investment deals, Management Information systems, Data Analysis, Financial Modelling. He has worked with companies like Azure Power, ReNew Power, Asian Development Bank, Rattan India, SNC Lavalin and Mott MacDonald. Priyadarshan has been awarded Zee Yuva Award (2017) for best practises in water conservation, Water Crusader Award (2017) by Hindustan Unilever and Energy Conservation Award (2016) by Vigyan Bharti. He holds a Bachelor in Engineering from VJTI, Mumbai, M.Tech from IIT Delhi and has earned CFA Charterholder from CFA Institute, USA.

Dhruv Sharma –Advisory Team

Mr. Dhruv Sharma, has been associated with Solar Manufacturing in India since 2008. As the CEO of Jupiter Solar, he has played a pivotal role in the transformational journey of the company. He is responsible for leading the development and execution of the company’s vision, strategy and plans.

Additionally, as Chief Business Manager at Premier Energies, he holds the responsibility of leading the foray of the Company into Solar cell manufacturing, focusing on Technology, Vendor relationships, Project management, Organization building and Key Account Marketing.

 

Kasturi Roy Choudhury – Advisory team

Ms. Kasturi Roy Choudhury is on the Advisory team at Premier Energies. She has over 3 decades of professional experience with ‘Consultancy for Change and Growth’ and specializes in the areas of Management Consultancy and Corporate Training. At CFCG, Kasturi works as a Senior Consultant anchoring key client relationships & accountable for deliverables.

In her personal capacity, Kasturi is associated with social organizations like Jeevika Development Society, Garbage Free India & Sanjeevani Life beyond Cancer. Her distinguished academic career includes:PGDM from IIM Ahmedabad (1988), DBF from ICFAI, Hyderabad (1990), BE (Electrical) from Jadavpur University (1986).

Our Vision

  • To be a global leader in creating sustainable renewable energy solutions that contribute to cleaner air and a greener world.

Our Mission

  • To be one among the top 3 brands in the industry for solar manufacturing by 2023 by focusing on quality and reliable energy solutions.
  • To be one among the top 5 employers of choice in the renewable energy space by 2025

Core Values

  • Commitment – Complete the given task thoroughly with timely decision making and perseverance
  • Collaboration – Winning through teamwork
  • Execution Excellence – Drive to achieve 100% results

10. What is the size of your company in terms of manufacturing capacities, growth chart, future expansion plans, revenues, shipments, ASP’s, financial figures?

Manufacturing capability:

Cell manufacturing Capacity750MW
Module Manufacturing Capacity1250MW

Future expansion plans:

  • And we are planning to put up another 1.1GW of cell line this year
  • Our target is to ramp up 1GW of cell & Module line every year to achieve 3GW cell & Module line capacity.

 

Shipment:

More than 1.5GW of modules has been supplied till date in India

 

11. What are the top 5 markets for your company in the past, present and future?

In Past we have been focusing on OEMs market. Currently we are dealing with large EPC & IPP customers and in future we will be focusing on exports as well.

12. Technology road map in terms of 1500V , Double Glass, Bifacial Cells, PERC/PERT Technologies, upcoming game changes technologies

Technology road map: 1500V

Mono facial will be in the leading market however Bifacial cell is the new product which has promising efficiencies in various terrains and geographical location. Double glass or transparent back sheet are the types of this product which are available in the market as of now. Our manufacturing lines are capable to produce Bi Facial Panels.

 

13. Explain various guarantees, warrantees, insurance, certifications, test results, performance report of your modules

 

Warranty:

LIMITED PRODUCT WARRANTY: 10 years

LIMITED OUTPUT WARRANTY: 25 years

Certifications:

“World’s First IEC CB 2016 certification for Solar PV Modules to Indian customer, Premier Energies issued by UL”.

“First Solar Photovoltaic Module Manufacturing Company in India to be certified by Bureau of Indian Standards.“

“Premier Energies Ltd is enlisted in the first list of ALMM”

14. Kindly highlight your product, technology & company USP’s, distinctive advantages etc

Product range and services:

Technology & USP’s:

Premier solar has the advanced technology in place for future needs as well.

The 750MW Cell & Module line facility has Universal Texturing line which can produce, poly, mono, mono PERC, and Bifacial modules interchangeably. Also the machinery can accommodate new technology like Topcon. The Plant is unique and pioneer in the latest technology in India.

Our new facility can produce up to 640 to 660Wp module.

Anand Gupta Editor - EQ Int'l Media Network