Canadian Solar

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Midterm Case Analysis

Problem Statement
1.Situation
Canadian Solar which is a traded solar cell and module manufacturer has experienced recent strong growth. Despite 2009 fluctuations in the solar industry namely for PV technology, the growth has been fuelled by Government incentives programs to encourage solar PV technology. The Solar industry is now highly competitive and companies follow an industrial organizational model. This is because they all compete mainly in PV technology, and this market is hinged on Government initiatives and renewable support schemes. Also, the international markets such as Spain (FIT) and Germany ( EEG law) influenced the companies ' strategy in terms of rates changes, over supply in 2009 among others. 2.Current strategy

Canadian solar has most of its product operations in China but its revenue from Europe, thus combining its low cost of manufacturing and its Canadian expertise to compete in both lost cost and differentiated markets. Having said that’s, Canadian solar serve its customers in various countries ranging from Europe to United States by establishing sales offices in strategic countries. The Solar company also invested in a PV Research and development facility in Suzhou. Canadian Solar finally uses an inverted vertical integration model to have control and flexibility upon its required components. 3.Issue

The solar cell and module manufacturer has to decide upon the future of its international strategy. It has experienced rapid growth fueled by Government incentives to install PV technology in Germany and Spain, but due to the crisis and Spain's government new cap, demand has been declining and is expected to continue in 2009. Canadian solar wants to focus on 10 major markets in the next few years, but is a change in its international strategy is currently a wise move for Qu? External Analysis

1. General Environment
Major consumers of PV technology are Project developers, utility companies, automotive industry, industrial product companies and solar installations companies among others. There is a growing trend for Solar PV technology and it experienced its largest growth of 60.8% in 2008. Some government are continuously offering renewable support schemes to encourage solar companies to install PV technology in their ground. One major component and factor influencing PV was silicon until a shortage where companies now consider thin film modules as another source 2. Industry Environment

As said above, one very important component of the solar industry is the Government intervention in form of subsidies, incentives and renewable support schemes. All this support hindered the growth in PV, with the addition of Chinese government announcing subsidies for utility-scale solar projects. Moreover on an International note, Germany's Renewable energy law almost assured Germany to be a top player in the market and have rates which will sustain installations. Spain on the other side, experienced a very high demand due to the creation of the Feed-in Tariff, but created a backlash against the government, making Spain a threat in the industry. The PV industry is an attractive one , since according to the EPIA, the predictions for 2009 ( exhibit 3 in the book) are showing increasing in all on the countries' policy driven scenarios for the top 13 markets. Moreover the average gross profit of PV module manufacturers is around 23.71% which is attractive considering the growing demand in renewable sources of energy. Finally most companies in the industry focus their value chain on operations and production, research and development and outbound logistics. An analysis of porters' five forces can be found in the appendix 1. 3. Competitor environment

The PV market has 10 top producers accounting for 55.3% of the PV modules sales in 2008, with China and Japan leading ( exhibit 5 from the book). Right now, vertical integration is very common and it is predicted to have more vertical...
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