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PV EXPO 2014

PV EXPO 2014

Japan's Largest B-to-B International Exhibition Specialised in PV Industry

Tokyo Big Sight, Tokyo, Japan

February 26-28, 2014

Gateway to the Booming Japanese Market in Photovoltaics

The 7th International Photovoltaic Power Generation Expo, (PV Expo 2014), held this year at Tokyo Big Sight, highlights PV cell modules, devices and materials from manufacturers from around the globe. The show's increasing size and range have closely tracked the highly active Japanese PV market. PV Expo is one of a cluster of eight shows comprising World Smart Energy Week 2014.

One of the Top Three Photovoltaic Shows in the Global PV Market
In Europe, it's Intersolar, and North America has the SPI Show. But for those companies interested in expanding into the strong PV market in Japan and the Far East, the place to be this year was the PV Expo 2014 held in Tokyo Big Sight on February 26 thru 28. In a truly global and fast maturing market, all signs now point to a critical mass being reached in the Far East, which makes attendance at this show a must.

You can hear it in the confident voices of many PV module makers here, like Mr. Don-in Shin of Qcells Corporation Japan, who was happy to announce that Qcells has already sold 520 megawatts (MW) worth of modules in Japan in 2013. His company now would like to target the untapped domestic residential market, so gathering information here about broader trends is important. "It's a bigger concept show because [World Smart Energy Week] has not only solar but also wind and smart grid sectors. With all these different sectors covered we can benchmark many other companies at this show and learn a lot about related industries."

And Mr. Go Sekiguchi of REC Solar Co. Ltd. (Japan), which sold 250 MW worth of PV modules last year domestically, asserted that "this is a combined show, the biggest PV show in Japan so you can meet everybody, suppliers, friends, competitors, and get all your info in one package." Mr. Vincent Wu of Linuo Power Group (China), a major East Asian PV module manufacturer, was quite happy that a major PV show was conveniently located in the Far East, remarking that "although the majority here are Japanese and Chinese, global companies always come to this show so we can meet opportunities from everywhere."

Photovoltaics is Booming in Japan
The opportunities offered at PV Expo come from the continued PV market expansion in Japan, due to the introduction of the Feed-in Tariff (FIT) in July 2012. The FIT is a government incentive program that gives renewable energy producers the right to sell their excess energy to electric utilities under long-term, fixed price conditions, and has predictably sparked sharp growth.

Opportunities are abundant for every type of PV product and service in both commercial and residential markets, from PC modules, to mounting systems, to full turnkey systems, to large projects involving EPC (engineering/ procurement/ construction) companies. Mr. Vincent Wu of Linuo Power Group also said that "these two years will be critical to establish a share in this rapidly growing module market."

Mounting systems and structures are very important in the PV market. Mr. Thomas Seeg and Mr. Willem Haag of K2 Systems (Germany), which was offering mounting systems at the Krannich Solar booth, together remarked: "The Japanese market is huge, everybody wants to be here". Aslo, Mr Boris Dya of Mounting Systems GmbH (Germany), which offers mounting systems to EPC companies, mentioned how his company is now setting up a Japanese subsidiary: "Now is the time to get in. This is a crucial show. We are interested in supplying ground-mounted systems here."

Dr. Christian Buchner of Schmid Group (Germany) was emphatic about growth opportunities for turnkey PV systems. He said, "We sell full turnkey PV systems, which will be the next generation of high efficiency PV systems. In my perception, it's only PV that's growing…now the big markets are China and Japan."

Mr. Chaudhary of Vikram Solar Private Limited, a major PV module maker in India, summed it up," This is a consistently growing market. We not only sell here but buy equipment from here as well. It helps to be present and show solidarity with the industry."

Good Categorization and Attendee Quality Make Business a Breeze
As is to be expected in Japan, exhibitors gave the organizers of the show high marks for organization, publicity, and especially for savvy categorization of a broad range of sectors and product niches.

Mr. Willem Haag of K2 Systems put his finger on exactly why the show was so efficient: "The halls divide up the categories well: if you want modules, you go there, if you want inverters, go there, if you want turnkey systems, go there." Mr. Gyanesh Chaudhary of Vikram Solar Private Limited gave his impressions of this, his first time at the show: "The show is well publicized, well-focused, with no non-essentials, and all the major players are here." Mr. Jukka Tittanen of ABB Holdings thought that the show attracted "lots of customers and early adapters". Many others agreed that the quality of the attendees was an important factor in making PV Expo a success for them. Mr. Sota Koyama of XSol Corporation (Japan) found that "the attendees' knowledge level is very high, they know what they want, and what they want to learn."

All in all, a very important show for all players, large and small, aiming at the rich rewards of the current East Asian PV boom.

Exhibition Name PV Expo 2014 (part of World Smart Energy Week 2014)External site: a new window will open.
Dates February 26-28, 2014
Frequency Biannual (Tokyo and Osaka)
Venue Tokyo Big Sight, Tokyo, Japan
Theme Products and services related to smart/renewable energy
Exhibitor Totals 1,592 Firms/Organizations(353 for PV Expo alone)
Visitor Totals 67,371 visitors
(for all 8 shows of World Smart Energy Week - no separate count for PV Expo)
Ticketing JPY 3,000 per person
(free admission with Admission Ticket or Advanced Registration Form)
Organizer Reed Exhibitions Japan Ltd.
Contact PV EXPO Show Management
TEL: +81-3-3349-8518
FAX: +81-3-3349-8530