Energy Outfitters to Distribute Sharp Modules

Energy Outfitters Ltd. has entered into an agreement with Sharp Electronics Corporation to become one of the first Sharp Solar System Division’s distributors in the United States.

GRANTS PASS, Oregon – May 29, 2002 [] “Sharp has waited until they were in a position to offer a constant supply, the correct range of products, very high quality and excellent value,” said Bob Maynard, Energy Outfitters President and founding partner. “We see Sharp using their well-known consumer brand name to build recognition for their photovoltaic products. We’ve already seen evidence of the strength of the Sharp name among our existing customers. Most dealers and their project managers will have no trouble convincing their customers to use Sharp’s products. Our company goals match because we’re both in favor of mainstreaming PV and renewable energy systems. As an industry leading value added distributor, this is just the partnership opportunity that we have been waiting for.” “We are very pleased that established and well respected solar products distributors such as Energy Outfitters have chosen to offer Sharp solar electric modules to their customers,” said Ron Kenedi, General Manager of the Solar Systems Division. “Sharp Solar Systems Division success in the United States is dependent on the success of these customers. By year end we expect to have triangular shaped modules that will give home owners, architects and project engineers more design flexibility and improve PV array aesthetics.” “At Sharp’s recent kickoff meeting in Huntington Beach, California they showed us green, golden brown and light blue PV cells, AC PV modules, thin film, virtually transparent modules and other new technologies. It’s clear that Sharp will innovate with new products. This is fantastic for consumers,” said Maynard. “As a value added distributor we’re looking for innovative partners who are committed to both our successes. Sharp is taking a long term view of the U.S. market and we expect them to be the market leader within 24 months. We anticipate that they will bring fully packaged and listed systems, like what they now provide in Japan, to the U.S. for grid tie applications.” Sharp’s product line is UL listed, has PTC ratings and has been added to the California Energy Commission’s approved product list. Sharp modules come with UL recognized Multi-Contact (MC) cables factory installed. “Sharp is the first in the PV industry to supply their complete line of panels with these easy to assemble, weather proof connectors,” said Ryan Mayfield, Energy Outfitters Technical Services Manager. “Our studies show that MC connectors offer installers a 25 to 35 percent savings in hardware and direct labor costs related to wiring the PV array.” MC connectors eliminate the need for conduit, accessing junction boxes and “provide plug and play” module interconnection. “Sharp’s polycrystalline technology reduces space requirement up to 10 percent over other manufacturers’ modules. This translates into greater power production in smaller areas. The module frame is the best we’ve ever seen, with high structural rigidity and the most convenient mounting hole pattern. The modules are extremely well made and carry a 25 year warranty. We expect them to be extremely reliable,” said Mayfield. Sharp’s modules are sized for a number of specialty applications including water pumping, recreational vehicle OEMs and the RV aftermarket industry. “Their decision to deliver somewhat higher wattage per panel better matches many existing pump products and can reduce the number of modules in a system. This simplifies installation and reduces cost,” said Ray Ogden, Energy Outfitters partner. “RV customers will find the combination of greater power, smaller footprint, easy wiring and stronger frame a great combination of benefits.” Energy Outfitters will be offering an aftermarket 80 watt and 123 watt RV Kit that includes controller and all required installation components under the RpowrTM brand.
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