The Global Brand & Marketing Director of Chinese solar PV company Trina Solar Cao Yunduan sat down for an exclusive interview with TaiyangNews Managing Director Michael Schmela at the TaiyangNews and SNEC Energy Storage, Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Leadership Conversations.
The interview (click on photo to watch video) was conducted at the recently concluded 8th (2023) International Energy Storage Technology, Equipment and Application Exhibition in Shanghai, China.
A leading name in solar PV industry, Trina has been expanding to associated technologies like solar trackers. The group also has a Smart Energy Business that’s focused on smart PV plus energy storage vertical. It launched the storage business in 2015. Today it produces battery cells, energy storage systems, and the like under the brand.
Pointing to the importance of storage in providing flexibility, stability and reliability for renewable energy developers, Yunduan said her company has opted for vertical integration in this space. These products cater to the utility, commercial as well as residential segments.
Yunduan explained that Trina is involved at 3 levels in the storage business, starting with the product level where it offers advanced 210 mm modules and smart trackers. For storage, the company has its Elementa storage solution for utility-scale PV.
The 2nd level is at the system level which is digitalized like the EMS or Smart Energy Cloud. The 3rd level is service that it provides to customers.
Yunduan stressed that there is no competition with battery manufacturers for the electric vehicles (EV) industry since Trina’s target audience for energy storage is totally different as is the application of its products.
When it comes to competition, Trina enjoys another advantage in terms of a deep understanding of the Chinese market in relation to the varied needs of energy storage products.
To be successful in this business, Yunduan believes it is also important for any company to have stable global operations and local team presence, which is where Trina has an edge.
Using its global sales channels, the manufacturer plans to cater to its current solar customers for energy storage systems while also selling these products to new customers who are into standalone energy storage.
Going forward, Trina plans to report 12 GWh battery cell manufacturing capacity by the end of 2023, expanding it further to 25 GWh by H2/2024.