What Kinds of Business Opportunities Exist in the Solar-diesel Hybrid Sector?

Sweet Answer from Solar Mango: (updated Jul 2015)

A large number of commercial and industrial units in countries such as India use diesel, and as the cost of diesel-based power is very high (20 US cents/kWh and above, depending on the country), any solution that cuts down on diesel use for power will find a market.

With this in mind, a number of entrepreneurs have been eyeing the solar-diesel hybrid sector for business opportunities.

How attractive indeed are the value-addition and business opportunities for entrepreneurs and small businesses in the solar-diesel hybrid sector?

Firstly, it should be noted that rooftop solar power will only likely bring about a reduction of 20-25% in the total amount of diesel consumed from the diesel generators and not much more than that, owing to a number of reasons. While a reduction of 20% diesel consumption is not bad at all, it just implies that rooftop solar does not yet provide a killer solution for diesel reduction or elimination.

In terms of opportunity sub-segments within the diesel-solar hybrid sectors, while on paper solar-diesel hybrids could find large and diverse markets in developing regions such as India and Africa, we at Solar Mango feel that the sweet spots for entrepreneurs will lie in the medium and large commercial enterprises (especially medium/large hotels and hospitals), as these are the ones that have very high costs both for grid power and diesel use. These are also usually the facilities that have reasonably large rooftop areas that could be used for solar panels.

In addition, as each of these entities can accommodate medium sizes solar power plants (in many cases upwards of 100 kW), the revenue per customer for the entrepreneur will also be reasonably high.

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