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US integrators make gains as utility-scale PV demand soars

January 10, 2011 | Paul Buckley | 222902037
The latest analysis from market analyst, IMS Research, shows that US PV system integrators gained places in the rankings in 2010. The market intelligence provider, which conducts ongoing surveys of system integrators and utilities, revealed that three large-scale system providers from the US appeared amongst the ten largest integrators in 2010 for the first time.

The number of system integrators in the US is quickly increasing. Of the 400 most active system integrators identified by IMS Research, nearly 30% of them are headquartered there, despite it accounting for less than 10% of installations completed worldwide.

2010 saw high demand for utility-scale systems, which grew the fastest of all system types, increasing by over 150% from 2009. Sunpower, First Solar and SunEdison, all US providers of these systems, were able to capitalize on this surging demand and cement places in the list of the largest integrators.

“2010 was an incredible year for utility-scale PV and a record capacity from such systems was installed worldwide during the year,” commented PV Research analyst, Sam Wilkinson. “Several very large plants were completed during the year, such as First Solar’s Sarnia project in Canada and SunEdison’s Rovigo plant in Italy. These plants have set new standards for the size of PV systems. They have also enabled these suppliers to become some of the largest integrators in the world,” Wilkinson continued.

In 2009, the rankings had been dominated by German companies and the largest integrator had been Q-Cells. Although a number of US suppliers have emerged amongst the leaders in 2010, preliminary results from IMS Research's next quarterly report show that a number of German companies, such as Juwi, still performed well.

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