AS Solar employs 140 people in Germany and renovated an industrial ruin to house its staff and simultaneously created a showroom, photovoltaic testing facility and "energy plus" renovation to demonstrate what is possible in terms of environmental renovation. The building, which cost around 7.5 million to renovate with the building process lasting 18 months, when fully equipped, will produce more electricity than it uses and features a rooftop photovoltaic installation and bio-mass heating. A solar carport and ground-mounted installation is also planned.
AS Solar reported revenues of 128 million in 2010 which totalled photovoltaic sales worth 70 megawatts (MW).
The company believes that this is the first time an "energy plus" building renovation such as this has taken place. AS Solars Head of Marketing Meike Koithahn explained to pv magazine the dual purpose the renewable installations at the AS Solar headquarters represents. "All solar products that AS Solar are selling we have installed here. We believe in our products and you can see them all here!"
Managing Director Gert Pommerien also wanted to make clear that the building also is a poignant reminder to architects and developers that older buildings can become not only energy efficient, but energy positive. "From a building that used to use a lot of energy, now we have a building that produces more energy than what we need!"
Pommerien also told pv magazine that he believes that the project is truly unique and sets new standards for environmentally friendly architectural rejuvenation, "theres nothing comparable to this in Europe [ ] and its most important because there are a lot of old buildings that use a lot of energy, and we show with this building that you can completely change this!"
The September edition of pv magazine will feature an article on AS Solar headquarters.