Why Italian PV asset managers are forced to innovate


The second "Asset Management Day" was held in Milan last week. 3megawatt was at the event, along with various PV asset managers, investors, O&M providers and advisors. A selection of speakers representing the mayor players of the Italian solar asset management scene discussed the current status and future perspectives for the Italian PV market. 

In the last couple of years the Italian PV market has been stalling as a result of retroactive cuts. This has held back investments and has challenged the whole industry, from EPC to owners, asset managers and O&M providers.  These cuts are putting pressure on players to strive for a leaner structure and forces them to innovate to reduce operating costs. Innovations include a change of business strategy and smart tools to improve the tracking of production, revenues and costs of their solar portfolios. 

Manuel Nasti, VP of Operations at 3megawatt, participated in the panel session "New tools used for solar asset management and O&M". A first take-away of the panel discussion was that after the rush for building new plants in the last years, the industry is paying more and more attention to solar asset management because of unpredicted new challenges and an increasing sophistication of investors and operators. 

Another important observation was that tools such as asset management platforms and PV monitoring systems should integrate with each other to facilitate the work of asset managers with the consolidation of ever growing data sets and reporting requirements. 

Regarding the Italian solar industry in general, the speakers at the conference predicted a consolidation period for solar assets. As the retroactive cuts are now a certainty, they expect that a secondary market for solar assets will gain pace, with troubled asset owners ceding assets to investors with lower operating costs and lower cost of capital.