Panasonic to roll out home battery to Europe, starting with Germany


Panasonic is ready to throw its hat into the ring as the fight for home storage dominance in Europe heats up. The Japanese tech giant will begin selling its home battery systems in Germany shortly, entering territory that has been earmarked by Tesla CEO Elon Musk as a prime market for its highly trumpeted Powerwall battery.

Panasonic has been in cahoots for a while now with Tesla, and produces the lithium-ion batteries used in the company’s electric vehicles. The home storage market of Europe is viewed by the two companies as an untapped and potentially lucrative one, particularly in Germany with its high levels of solar penetration.

Panasonic will soon launch its home storage battery in Australia following the successful roll out in its domestic market of Japan, and after Germany will introduce the system to the U.K., France and other European markets, confirmed Panasonic Europe CEO Laurent Abadie at the IFA electronics show in Berlin this week.

The Panasonic battery is a lithium-ion-based system with a storage capacity of 8 kWh, with a 2 kW output and lightweight, sleek design that makes it easy to install and an affordable addition to a typical home energy management system.

The battery has been designed to increase self consumption in the home, and can currently allow households to replace up to 70% of energy usage by storing whatever their solar system generates.

"We are not far from achieving 100% in the future," said Abadie. "The time it will take to reach that goal depends on the region. If you are in the Nordics, you need a lot of energy in the winter, when you don’t get much light."

According to the company’s calculations, Panasonic may soon generate revenues of $83 million for its home storage sector outside of Japan by 2018.

Panasonic will not have the European market all to itself, however, with Tesla’s Powerwall – introduced to the world in May – also set for European launch later this year, while a suite of other similar applications and systems are also muscling in on a space that is set to become much more crowded in 2016 than it is currently.