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Of Pigs and Cows – How to reliably plan a PV investment

Buy a pig in a poke? A successful investor shall gather the most detailed information possible about the profitability of his PV installation!

The internet offers several return-on-investment ROI calculators for photovoltaic energy investments, some of which are free of charge. They allow for making reliable forecasts of amortisation time, annual dividend or nominal power of solar installations. Since these are investments with a long time horizon of 20 to 30 years, factors such as future maintenance cost, electricity price and interest rates have to be included too.

PVCalc.org is such an online tool. The ROI calculator for PV installations helps developers, engineers and solar technologists with planning and realisation of their PV project. Taking into account all relevant factors (this includes irradiation, annual yield, leverage, purchase price and inflation rate) PVCalc accurately calculates the expected return on investment.

The individual results are presented in several graphs and tables, and can be downloaded in different formats.

What better way to find your cash cow? Milk the Sun the photovoltaic market place entered into a co-operation with Mayer Analytics, the developer of PVCalc. Mayer Analytics unites energy, finance and trading. It created PVCalc as part of the investment advisory service. Now investors can access the ROI calculator directly from the online platform of MilktheSun.com.

 

Online Marketplace for the European Photovoltaic Industry

Milk the Sun Solar PVEven with the major advancements to today’s sophisticated technology, online sales still need to overcome many hurdles in order to win the trust of perspective investors. To start with, a lot of purchasers do not trust email as a reliable channel to safely & successfully transmit confidential documentation.  Full email accounts and data size restrictions often hinder a seamless transfer of data between sales & their customers. But at least in the photovoltaic sector, there is now help at hand – in the form of Milk the Sun.  Owners with PV project licences and solar energy installations to sell can now use the industry’s online marketplace (Milk the Sun) which provides them with free online space to securely save their data which they can subsequently make available to selected investors by allocating and controlling the individual access rights.

All documentation relevant to PV installations or project licences (contracts, statistical data, building plans, approval documents etc) can now easily be uploaded in HTTPS-encrypted format onto the Milk the Sun platform. Potential investors who are interested in buying these licences/installations only get full access to view the complete documentation, including the contact details of the provider, after they have been officially approved and allocated access to these secure areas.  All information is provided in a standardised format in order to enable an effective comparison of data by potential investors.  In this way both partners save valuable time and the prompt completion of the due diligence is also ensured.   Supply and demand have direct contact & communication with each other.

Milk the Sun’s online platform offers users a clear overview of all offers currently available on the photovoltaic marketplace in Europe. All confidential project data is securely protected, stored in the online storage space allocated to that project/installation and is only ever made accessible to potential investors after a strict process of registration & approval.  This entire process is carried out with the upmost confidentiality for our valued customers, thus completely removing all the problems commonly experienced when using email as the main communication channel.

Milk the Sun in interview with MeinStartup.com

MeinStartup.com is an online portal around the topics of entrepreneurship innovative business ideas and self-employment. Felix Krause CEO of Milk the Sun had the chance to present our company in an interview. Get all the answers to our business concept the energy transition and the development of the photovoltaic industry here.

 

Solar: The solution for India’s energy problems

Solar India MtSAfter last week’s extensive blackouts in India 600 million people were suddenly without electricity. Now, experts advise to invest in solar energy. Indian power supply is known to be unstable and unreliable. Up until today roughly 400 million inhabitants are not connected to the grid. The oil price increased by 40% this year and coal imports are becoming scarcer. Sunlight, however, is available in abundance. In India, the sun shines on 300 days of the year, irradiating with an average 4 to 7 kWh per m² per day: perfect conditions for switching to solar energy to reduce the burden on the grid and pre-empt further structural problems of energy provision.

 

SecondSol on serviceportal – interview for Milk the Sun

Milk the Sun and SecondSol will cooperate in future and support each other making the PV market more efficient and transparent. We’ve had a chance to ask Frank Fiedler, CEO at SecondSol what he is hoping to gain from the cooperation and what his future plans are.

 

SecondSol is an online secondary market for PV modules, ac-converter and co. in connection with photovoltaics. Please describe what you are doing in specific. „We are producing solarmodules with atomic energy in Asia, we transport them to Germany with heavy crude oil and dispose of them because they don’t meet our standards!” Out of this reason the project SecondSol was developed in 2010 and brought to life especially for the PV industry in 2011. The platform’s aim is to guarantee the maintenance of second-hand-parts for a lifetime of a PV plantan that lasts at least 20 years. The idea started off with insurances demanding parts to replace losses after a claim of PV damage or theft conserning private as well as industrial PV operators. On the seller side there are different types of distributers and manufacturers that needed a distribution channel for remaining stock and seconds. SecondSol brings together supply and demand and brings transparency into the mass of second hand products (that are for instance needed by organisations for aid projects). The marketplace also includes an additional logistics and storage system, intelligent software that always places products according to it’s search-engine position. Partners are insurances, distributers, manufacturers, organisations, LDCs and private persons.

 

How does your online secondary market exactly work? SecondSol is an all direct tradingplatform that buyers and sellers can use to trade. A sales comission is due after the deal is sealed. Bigger clients have the opportunity to get help from our sales agency. An assistant helps uploading your products. SecondSol additionally has a logistics tool and the service area which guarantees you a direct customer support via phone hotline. A PV newsservice and serviceindex completes SecondSol.

 

Who is the average user of your service? Our user come from all over the world. A few weeks ago we had the first visitor from South Africa. Our clients are insurances, distributers, manufacturers, organisations and private persons from all over the world.

 

What are your expectations from cooperating with Milk the Sun? I believe we have the same goals. We both want to help sustainibility back to its roots. We want to bring together people and solve problems that so far have been underestimated in the PV industry. With this focus we can profit from each other a lot. Both companies have a matching innovative and motivated team to help establish the ideas on an international scale in the markets. One specific similarity are shared by both business models: Their target group is part of a market that is only about to start growing and will really get going in a couple of years. This makes Milk the Sun and SecondSol – The Panel Scout – both charming.

 

Do you dare to take a glance into the future of the PV industry? How do you judge on the momentary situation and which possinbilities do German companies have to stay successful in this segment? I hope for it! It would be madness if a few politicians manage to destroy the technological advantages of PV in this country. A reduction of local  FiTs does make sense, but in an maintainable manner. Of course German manufacturers must adjust their in-company structures. The boom made everyone a little lazy in facilitating the industry’s consolidation. In general it is important to say that PV will be the future. The sun shines every day, and a day’s sunshine generates enough energy to feed the world with it for a year.

 

SecondSol Secondary Market

 

SecondSol has ten times as much users as in the beginning. You are expanding and have recently added a PV-search-tool. Are you pleased with yourself? Where will you be standing in a year from now? Satisfaction means cessation…just a joke. To be honest the first run surprised us a little and we had to adjust our system to the high demands. The software is always the achillis tendon – first-class but also very complex. By now I have stopped to try predicting the exact launch of a new application. Our new PV-search-tool exactly meets the needs of the industry. We are contacted every day from insurance companies or plant manager that are desperately looking for a special single replacement. These offers or inquiries can be submitted to our site for free. As soon as the search is active it goes out to all SecondSol user, who have applied for it. This is how they have the instant possibility to place offers, if they have the modules in their cellar or in stock. Where we se ourselves in July 2013? It is our aim to become the worldwide leader of all PV secondary markets . The goal surely is ambitious but we already have so much international encouragement that we have a great starting point and all necessary requirements.

 

Milk the Sun thanks SecondSol for this very enlightning conversation and is looking forward to a productive cooperation.

 

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