With the very early adopters of solar in Germany facing the end of their FiTs in 2020 it certainly does present a significant opportunity for retrofitting energy storage systems. PV owners will be minded to install a storage system so they can maximise their self-consumption as their payments for producing and selling their PV power ends. Also by 2020, battery prices will have continued to drop even further encouraging greater uptake. With smart-offerings from the likes of sonnen, PV owners will have the opportunity to completely overhaul how they buy their energy, cutting out the traditional energy utilities.
At the Intersolar Europe / ees Europe trade shows in Munich, Sonnen’s sales director Philipp Schröder – formerly with Tesla – explained that his company is gunning for a market opportunity that is likely to fall into place. FiT agreements were valid for 20 years, guaranteeing PV systems top prices for electricity generated or put into the grid. As Schröder pointed out, this means they will begin to expire in less than three years, leaving system owners with the choice of continuing to generate power for nothing, or install a battery and make sure they get the maximum value from utilising that power on-site themselves. “There are 1.6 million assets in Germany. Hundreds of thousands of them will fall out of the FiT and they will literally produce electricity for free - and we are taking that market,” Schröder said.