PicoPV Systems: Costs, Financing, Business and Operation Models

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Specifications of costs, financial models, diffusion, and market of Pico Photovoltaic systems can be found in the following sections and further informaiton links.

PicoPV Costs

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PicoPV systems resemble a smaller and least costly alternative to Solar Home Systems. Prices for PicoPV systems are composed of the initial investment, monthly cost, lighting service cost.

Financing Models

► Further Information: Financing Models for Solar Home Systems

Relying on experience with Solar Home Systems, this article provides different finaning models, such as cash sales, credit sales and free-for-service. Additional, it gives an overview about advantages and disadvantages of each model.

PicoPV Diffusion

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PicoPV products, in contrast to more complex higher-priced solar products, it will be relatively easy to find already existing distribution channels firmly rooted in the private sector, into which PicoPV products can be integrated in a competitive and efficient manner. This article informs about dissemination models and diffusion of PicoPV systems, partly relying on experience with Solar Home Systems.

Market for PicoPV

Market Trends in the PicoPV Sector and the Role of Development Cooperation

The market for picoPV products has seen a strong increase over recent years. It is the task of international cooperation such as the Energising Development (EnDev) programme to enable customers to compare the strengths and weaknesses of generic and brand products through awareness campaigns and consumer information. The goal of development cooperation is to promote a positive welfare impact and a reduction of poverty through a rational acquisition of PicoPV products. On the supply side, it is important to create a value chain in the low price-segment with distributors and retailers offering products with a good price-to-quality-ratio even in remote areas and granting customers a warranty of 1 to 2 years for their products.

Recent Market for PicoPV Systems

The market for PicoPV systems is constantly growing: More than 100 firms are offering PicoPV products in developing countries today and new products are introduced almost daily. Additionally, a fast growth is expected due to the fact, that a decrease of prices for solar components, such as solar panels and LED's is forecasted. With regard to the huge demand for mobile phones in developing countries, almost a solar boom is expected in order to recharge the mobile phones with additional applications. Furthermore, additional applications, such as refrigerators and small TV's will increase attractiveness of PicoPV systems. This article gives an overview of the recent market and activities for a further market development.

Market Research on PicoPV Systems of Lighting Africa

Lighting Africa is a joint IFC and World Bank program. Its objective is to provide up to 250 million people in sub-Saharan Africa with access to light generated by alternative energy sources by 2030.

The article gives an overview on market research in Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania and Zambia with focus on five products for households and micro-businesses. The research consisted of:

  • exploratory qualitative study
  • quantitative usage and attitudes study
  • product and concept testing study

PicoPV System Market Assessment in Ethiopia

This article presents the results from a report from market assessment under taken for the GIZ ECO EnDev Programme. These analysis examine performance indicators, market shares, changes since the baseline, and incremental cost differences before and after the established retailers were handed over by the Rural Energy Foundation/Solar Now to GIZ ECO.

Further Information