Commercial solar market - Smart Energy Decisions

Commercial, Industrial, Solar, Sourcing Renewables  -  May 24, 2016

Corporate solar purchases among key commercial solar market drivers, study says

The continued growth in corporate adoption of solar energy is expected to contribute to a rebound in the commercial market in the coming years, according to a new report from Greentech Media. 

Corporate demand for solar systems, combined with other factors — including the extension of the federal investment tax credit; advancements in the availability of financing for small commercial systems; and an expanding community solar market — is expected to drive a previously stagnant commercial market to grow 30% in 2016, according to the GTM Research study released May 23. 

The analysts expect commercial solar will grow a notable 30% this year, which shakes out to about 1.3 GW of generation installed. By 2020, GTM Research expects the U.S. nonresidential segment to hit 3 GW with a valuation of $3.8 billion.

The report also highlights the fragmented nature of the commercial solar market: the top ten developers account for only 42% of the total market. That's in stark contrast to the residential market, where GTM Research said the top three developers installed almost of half of the total installations in 2015. 

"The fragmented commercial developer landscape is largely the result of bottlenecks in the customer origination process that make it difficult for any individual player to consistently grow," Senior Solar Analyst and report author Nicole Litvak said in a news release about the report. "There are therefore no dominant players driving the overall market growth."

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