The Salesperson’s Lie
Did you know that the solar industry is riddled with manufacturers and installers that have gone bankrupt? One of the saddest parts of any manufacturer or installer going bankrupt is how this event affects all the customers that believed in the company. Unfortunately, the prospective business or home owners are not generally told what solar panel is being used in an installation. Seriously. Instead of the sales person being honest with the business or homeowner and giving them a sobering thought like, “you should know that over the last 20 years, 1,000+ solar manufacturers and installers have failed, leaving millions of orphaned businesses and homeowners with no one to go to if there’s an issue”, we very frequently hear that prospects are being told, “All modules are pretty much the same”. This crap is preached over and over again! This, is the chant of the ill-informed salesperson. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised in an industry where celebrity salesmen looking like they’re stinking drunk with power (homage to Metallica) are the norm.
We are currently looking at a retrofit where someone has had Suntech on their roof for several years. Did you know that some installers are still selling Suntech? Seriously, Suntech is still being sold in the USA! I guess it’s because all modules are the same…right? For the record, we have never and would never sell a Suntech product. Let’s go down memory lane with Suntech……
2001 – Founded in Wuxi, China
2005 – IPO on NYSE – First Chinese solar company
2006 – Acquired MSK Corporation (Japan’s largest PV manufacturer)
- – March – Defaults on US $541 Million bond payment
- March 20 – Wuxi Suntech Power Holdings, Main subsidiary of Suntech, declares bankruptcy. Due to hefty tariffs on Chinese solar cells by the US International Trade Commission. At the time, it was thought that perhaps the govt would likely step in and continue production to preserve jobs.
- Suntech Power’s Chinese subsidiary filed for bankruptcy without the parent also filing.
- Wuxi Suntech held virtually all of the factories and physical assets of Suntech Power and the assets are in China, making it easier for Chinese banks to take them over.
- Nov – Shares delisted from NYSE.
- Suntech Wuxi’s parent Suntech Power Holdings applied for voluntary liquidation in the Cayman Islands.
- Fight for control of Suntech between Wuxi Guolian, representing HQ’s hometown, and Shunfeng PV, the bankruptcy court’s reorganization choice. Shunfeng bid $492 million. Wuxi promised $150 million in cash to guarantee that the company’s plans and jobs will stay in Wuxi. Chinese bankruptcy court turned Suntech over to Shunfeng for restructuring according
2014 – February – Files for Chapter 15 in Manhattan
- Shunfeng International Clear Energy LTD announce it was going to invest in/acquire. Acquired by initially agreeing to pay 30% of Suntech’s debt to Chinese creditors.
2019 – October 22 – Wuxi Suntech Power is no longer a defaulter (announced on its website)
- November – Shunfeng looking to sell off PV manufacturing, first announced in April 2019. Halts trading in Hong Kong.
…..Well, that was fun! Question,….with the economic slowdown due to COVID19, do you think more solar manufacturers are at risk of going bankrupt? My wife would say, Duh!! Yet, business and residential prospects are still being told that a solar panel is a solar panel. Solar PV is all pretty much the same. Nonsense! At OGW Energy Resources, we have never had this stance. Now more than ever, the behind the scenes efforts we make in looking at company financials is more critical than ever.
At OGW Energy Resources degradation, output, warranty and strength of company are all examined. In other words, outside the fact that one company to another will never be an apples to apples comparison, the due diligence that we do for our customers includes standing firm on the quality of product and strength of company. We do this impart so that we can continue to offer our customers the peace of mind in knowing that our solutions are second to none and that we are the only dedicated renewable energy company in Ohio older than 10 years that never installed a module, inverter or solar rack from a company that has gone out of business.
Be safe out there….be smart…. and when you’re ready to start looking at solar for your business or home…go with the company that’s been discerning since day one, Tipp City, Ohio’s own OGW Energy Resources.