Solar Today: FIMER's big ambition to grow Korea market share with premium solar inverter solutions

South Korea’s leading PV magazine Solar Today in its May 2021 issue spoke with FIMER Korea Country Manager Jun-Beom An about the company’s ambitions following its transition from the ABB solar inverter business. Enclosed is a translated excerpt of the article:

In early 2020, FIMER completed the acquisition of Swiss engineering conglomerate, ABB’s solar inverter business. While it has retained the business’ core professional workforce and philosophy of creating customer value post-acquisition, the Italian solar inverter manufacturer is scaling new heights by focusing on customer needs while reinforcing product quality.

While numerous solar inverter manufacturers have entered the market in light of Korea’s renewable energy demand surge, FIMER stands out as a global powerhouse of premium, Italian-made solar inverter solutions. The Italian sensibility is reflected in all of FIMER’s products, with the company taking on a bold approach of investing consistently in R&D. 

The company operates training centers and manufacturing hubs in over 20 countries internationally and actively supports advancements in the energy industry, covering the commercial and industrial (C&I), utility-scale and residential solar segments.  

Said FIMER Country Manager Jun-Beom An: “FIMER’s solar inverters are not just high performance, but comply with rigorous safety standards. Our products provide high energy yields while being highly sensitive in detecting issues such as pressure abnormalities and power leaks. Our customers recognize these qualities and continue to make repeat purchases post-acquisition.”

With the acquisition comes the question of after-sales services, which prompted Solar Today to ask how FIMER is managing inquiries for services related to ABB solar inverters. 

Mr An was quick to clarify that there was a precedent set when ABB bought over the Power-One solar inverter business, that all existing inverters would be entitled to after-sales service regardless of whether they were purchased pre- or post-acquisition. 

This principle has continued in FIMER and according to Mr An, not many customers have expressed concern over this and continue to use their solar inverters with confidence. He also added that the company regularly services inverters that still carry the Power-One logo – a testament to the longevity of the company’s solar inverters.

“To repay the trust of our customers, we plan to provide preventive maintenance services for our solar inverters in Korea. FIMER will continue to provide high quality Italian products to both existing and new customers,” he added 

Solar Today: What are some of the notable features in FIMER’s solar inverter products?
Jun-Beom An: In Korea, our core market comprises small and medium businesses within the commercial and industrial (C&I) segment. We offer the widest range of string inverters on the market. FIMER’s Trio-50.0-TL and PVS-100-TL inverters in particular, are well-received for their high-performance features, sturdiness and ease of installation. Perfectly designed for installation in commercial buildings, these solar inverters provide small and medium-sized solar power facilities with a quick return on investment. 

FIMER’s inverters are engineered to detect even the most minute factors that hinder power generation – issues that go undetected in some solar inverters. It is critical to capture these loss factors, regardless of how small they might be because they are key to ensuring optimal power generation in customers’ PV systems. For example, all of FIMER’s string inverters are built in with the FIMER PowerGain scanning algorithm, which optimizes the yield of any PV system even under shading conditions.

Are FIMER’s solar inverters KS (Korean Industrial Standards)-certified?
The KS (Korean Industrial Standards) is one of the most rigorous codes set to verify the high safety and performance of products, as well as the company’s corporate management system, quality and service system. I am proud to say that FIMER’s solar inverters not only meet the requirements of the KS compliance certificate, but obtained the KS C 8565 certification in 2018 before it officially became mandatory for grid connection in 2020. In fact, FIMER’s PVS-100-TL and TRIO-TM-50.0 are KS-certified. This demonstrates FIMER Korea’s capabilities in being one step ahead in responding to the needs of the market.

What is FIMER doing to strengthen the competitiveness of your solar inverters in Korea?
In Korea, there are three keys ways in which FIMER creates value for all our PV customers and differentiates ourselves from the competition. Firstly, we offer one of the most extensive premium solar inverter solutions on the market to cater to differing requirements. Secondly, we provide good product availability via our established local distributor network. Last but not least, we supply our customers with the necessary warehousing and logistical solutions. 

Are there any differences in the after-sales service and O&M fields following your transition from the ABB solar inverter business?
Our fundamental principle has always been to provide fast and accurate after-sales service within 48 hours. As service is directly connected to product quality and safety, prompt after-sales service is a principle that we have always adhered to, pre- and post-acquisition. 

Over the next few months, we plan to shift our focus towards ensuring the maximum safety of our customers' power plants. In addition, we will continue to provide O&M guidance through continuous education to keep the solar inverters working in tip-top condition. It is worth noting that our inverters can be monitored remotely to ensure that they are functioning properly, and if not, the necessary services will be provided immediately.

What is on the horizon for FIMER in Korea?
The demand for solar is set to increase in line with Korea’s Renewable Energy 3020 plan, in which the country’s goal is to produce 20% of its energy from renewable sources by 2030. Presently we are focused on strengthening our partnership with distributors, installers and EPCs in line with our post-acquisition ambitions. While we offer one of the most comprehensive ranges of solar inverter solutions on the market, we are aiming for further growth to gear up for the increase in demand. 

The original article in Korean, is available via this link.

For more information, please contact:

Chen Minming
Marketing Communications Manager, APAC