India has recently seen a revolutionary shift from conventional to the renewable sources of energy. The adoption of solar energy has been the front runner. Till about a few years back, having a solar plant on your rooftop was aspirational. And the economies weren’t much for people to see this as a feasible option to power the premise. The recent years have seen many enablers to facilitate this magnanimous shift. This fragmented industry which sees many local installers serving in a localized territory, has gradually started seeing consolidation. Start-ups like Sundane Energy offer end to end services for rooftop solar plant installations across India.
The MARKET FIT
Customers look for best-in-class installation, competent price and the highest level of after- sales service. Sundane offers their customers a unique and never heard of ‘no question asked maintenance’ for the lifetime of the plant. Sundane has successfully installed many roof top solar plants in various parts of the country, including a few in the tough terrains of Uttarakhand.
Pic 1: Sundane helped Mr.Satish Chand Pant go Solar by installing a 4kW rooftop plant at his residence in Pauri Garhwal, Uttarakhand
What makes Sundane stand ahead of all other players in this industry is the quality of their installations which is executed and supervised by a pool of highly trained engineers who undergo a very strict scrutiny and training before hitting the field.
Sundane was founded by Ashesh Raghav and Himanshu Baghel, both batch-mates at NIT Rourkela. After completing his MBA from IMT Ghaziabad, Ashesh worked with a couple of start-ups in Ed-tech and Fin-tech domains in senior management roles. With him, he brings in wide experience in sales, business development and strategic marketing to the organization.
Himanshu completed his Masters from TISS Mumbai. He worked with infrastructure consultancies and various state electricity regulatory commissions. He brings in an in-depth knowledge and experience of the regulatory frameworks and the existing policies in the electricity sector.
Pic 2: Ashesh Raghav (L), Pitoshe Sumi (C), Himanshu Baghel(R)with a 4 kW on-grid rooftop solar plant commissioned by Sundane in Kotdwar, Uttarakhand
On the advisory board of Sundane are senior people from various domains ranging from smart grids, renewable energy, project management and electricity regulators.
Their target customers are potentially anyone who has an un-shaded roof and has an electricity connection in the premise, but Sundane essentially focusses on two categories –
Residential consumers with minimum 3500 units of average annual electricity consumption with an ownership of min 500 sq.ft. of un-shaded roof area.
Owners of mid-sized institutions like schools, hospitals, orphanages, workshops, factories etc.
When asked about the unique problem that Sundane intends to solve, Ashesh said,
‘Rooftop solar installations are in a very nascent stage and off late, it has started gaining the momentum. Customers are becoming aware, but there isn’t any reputed brand for them to go to, with a reach in the market. Most of the EPC installers are either too big to be interested in small sized domestic or institutional rooftop installations or are too small to have a reach outside their local markets. Consumers are stuck and have no option other than to go with the local players which lack – technical expertise. After-sales services also used to go for a toss. Sundane endeavors to fill this gap and consolidate this highly-fragmented market with a smooth customer experience and high quality standardized installations across the nation.’
Sundane has its branch offices in Gurgaon, Bhopal and Dimapur. They currently operate in 8 states – Delhi, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and Nagaland. Their plan is to scale up with a presence in 12 states by March 2019 and subsequently to 15 states by 2020 with 20 MW of commissioned rooftop solar plants across India.