Recently, Infinite Energy announced that they would be exiting PV (operational), and will be focusing on other opportunities and markets. As a long-time competitor of theirs, this was disappointing to see, as it reflects on the misdirection and poor practices utilised by many companies in the industry that could lead to an ethical and reputable company like Infinite Energy to be unable to keep pace.
Infinite Energy chief executive officer Andrew Sutherland described the issue in his announcement, saying that; “While the Western Australia (WA) solar market continues to add rooftop solar capacity, establishing a sustainable business model that can support a quality product offering in a highly saturated, low margin and low barrier-to-entry solar market has proved a challenge.”
A term that is often thrown around in our industry is “Phoenix company”, it is this style of business that tarnishes the reputation of the industry as a whole. Phoenix companies are often able to rapidly gain market share, by offering lower cost systems than what other companies can offer, often using lower quality components to do so.
Phoenix companies only tend to stick around for a few years before disbanding, leaving their customers high and dry, with no service network to support them or assist them with warranty claims. We receive many calls from such companies' customers, looking for someone to assist them with their system, which of course we are happy to do.
But they aren’t really gone, for all too often, a few years or even months after they disappeared, a new company, with several of the same staff, suspiciously similar practices, and hastily changed logos will pop back up. They do this so that they do not have to pay costs such as taxes, employee entitlements, debts, and critically to their customers, claims and warranties.
These practices allow them to avoid having to provide long-term service, and the low cost of entry to market that Andrew Sutherland mentioned is what allows them to leave and re-enter the market regularly like that. Companies like this are the reason it is critical customers do their due diligence in researching who they want to install their solar.
If you want to avoid running into one of these companies, we advise researching how long a company has been in business, read other customers' reviews to see what their experiences have been like, and ensure they have all relevant accreditations. If you’d like more information about what to look for in a reputable solar company, you can read on here.
For our part, Solargain has been active in the solar energy industry for 16 years now, and have seen many titans of the industry, as well as far too many phoenix companies come and go. If you’d like a quote from a solar company you can trust, or are looking for someone to provide service to your Infinite Energy PV system, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team today through the form below.