Building a network for change

About one year ago, Sunrock established the Strategy team – a group of six colleagues dedicated to fostering relationships throughout Europe that will accelerate our solar journey. The team focuses on supporting Sunrock with market research and industry intelligence, providing strategic analysis, engaging on ESG issues and advocating for rooftop solar at both national and EU levels, thereby accelerating the energy transition.
Kahya Engler, Technical Lead M&A (Mergers & Acquisitions) and Strategy, explains why these relationships are at the heart of our solar energy future.
As I just had my first anniversary in Sunrock’s strategy team, I’d like to reflect on the team’s purpose and the importance of the work we are engaged in. One of Sunrock’s core values is partnerships, as we believe that only joint effort will drive the energy transition from fossil fuels to renewables for everyone.
We are active members of Solar Power Europe, the member-led association for the European solar sector, where we exchange industry news and jointly lobby for topics that support our business and our mission to serve our customers with clean energy.
Since PV industry growth still depends on policy, our work with Solar Power Europe brings us a platform for lobbying, visibility, and networking. We work on topics as broad as quality standards, sustainability, circularity, and fair labor rights. We exchange knowledge on topics that shape our industry. This year, Solar Power Europe added a special rooftop focus group, in which Sunrock is an active member.
Setting best practices
I am particularly proud of another focus group in which we participate: the lifecycle quality workstream group, which is responsible for Solar Power Europe’s Best Practice Guide. This group consists of several PV experts from around Europe, who create the highest quality standards for the design, construction, and maintenance of PV systems and capture these standards in public guides. At Sunrock, we recently used this industry-leading guide as a basis for a Request for Proposal for Operations & Maintenance services for a capacity of 200 MWp of our assets.
Furthermore, we contributed to the best practices digital platform that brings all of the workstream’s products under one roof, and is designed as the definitive one-stop shop for solar quality assurance in Europe. The Solar Best Practice digital platform makes it easier than ever to explore Solar Power Europe’s free Best Practice Guidelines.
As Sunrock grows into a pan-European player, being part of Solar Power Europe offers us invaluable insights into policy development and legislation changes applicable to the PV market and insights from members active in other countries. These insights are essential as we shape our ongoing strategy serving clients across Europe.
In February, for the first time, Solar Power Europe organized a Solar Quality Summit in Barcelona, and I was honored to speak about Finance and Project Bankability. Participation in events like this helps establish Sunrock as a voice in the energy transition. The next edition of the Solar Quality Summit is scheduled for January 23-24, 2024.
More partnerships, more growth
Solar Power Europe is not the only important relationship we are fostering as part of our collaborative strategy. Since 2021, we have been active on the topic of PV systems on buildings within the Bundesverband Solarwirtschaft (BSW Solar), the industry association in Germany. Our engagement within the working group on a public survey in the county of North Rhine-Westphalia had a direct effect leading to the reduction of the distance between PV panels and the fire wall, meaning more PV on our clients’ roofs!  Now, at Solar Power Europe, this work is being picked up to influence policy advice at the EU level.
In the Dutch market, we’re active member of Holland Solar. This organization helps us with political networking, visibility, and with keeping up to date on the quality and safety standards in the industry. Through Holland Solar, we connect and engage with other members to share knowledge and best practices.
In France, we are one of the 28 members and part of energy working group Afilog, an association that unites professionals from the logistics and industrial real estate world. The exchange of best practices, knowledge, and expertise with Afilog members and the ability to discuss urgent topics of the energy transition with experts in the field helps us to even better advise our customers.
Making an impact
Being part of associations like Solar Power Europe, BSW, Holland Solar and Afilog has become invaluable for the Strategy team at Sunrock, enabling us to serve our mission, clients and partners better. For me, it is highly satisfying work to see a policy come into fruition, especially when the direct impact is more PV panels on roofs! Being part of the Strategy team gives me the opportunity to contribute to the acceleration of the entire industry, one partnership at a time.

Insight written by

Kahya Engler

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