Exclusive: SolarEdge poised to become global market leader in residential inverter segment in 2016


More remarkable than SolarEdge's 10 millionth shipment milestone is the rate at which the company is expanding its global market share. Almost half of its shipments came in 2015 when SolarEdge deployed over 1.3 GW of inverter power globally. This figure compares to some 600 MW shipped in 2014.

These shipment figures make SolarEdge the fastest growing inverter company in the entire industry in 2015.

The residential market segment makes up anywhere between 70% and 75% of SolarEdge's shipments so that SolarEdge supplied some 950 MW of inverter solutions to residential customers worldwide in 2015. These figures put SolarEdge firmly in second place behind SMA on a global scale for the residential inverter market segment in 2015. The phenomenal growth trajectory of SolarEdge over the past two years clearly indicates that the inverter specialist from Israel will capture the No. 1 spot in the residential market segment in 2016 globally. In the calendar year 2015, SolarEdge was already the leading company in the residential segment in terms of revenues as well as profits.

In the chart below, shipments and profits for the residential segment of SolarEdge and SMA are compared on a quarterly basis over the past two years.

Regarding MW sold to residential installations, SMA’s shipments varied between 200 MW and 300 MW on a quarterly basis over the past two years. In the final quarter of 2015 SolarEdge shipped some 290 MW in the residential segment and has thus almost caught up to SMA supplying an estimated 300 MW to residential installations in that period.

The growth trajectory of SolarEdge is truly impressive, definitively illustrated on the chart, increasing its shipments into the residential segment more than fourfold over a period of fewer than two years – from some 70 MW in calendar 1Q14 to an estimated 290 MW in calendar 4Q15. The underlying assumption of the chart and analysis is that in 1Q14 some 84% of SolarEdge’s sales were linked to the residential market segment. Whereas by the end of 2015, the residential segment accounted for some 70% of SolarEdge’s sales, as the growth rate for SolarEdge was even higher in the commercial segment than in residential.

Regarding profits, SolarEdge has already positioned itself clearly ahead of SMA.

SolarEdge broke-even on the EBIT-level once quarterly shipments exceeded 160 MW. For SMA, it looks like the EBIT-breakeven threshold in the residential segment is closer to 300 MW of quarterly shipments.

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Read Goetz Fischbeck's analysis about SMA’s struggle to fend off the competitors in the different segments of the inverter market in the March edition of pv magazine.

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