Solar Philippines is now the first Filipino company to win Power Company of the Year at the Asian Power Awards, the region’s most prestigious awards known as “the Oscars of the power industry”. The company was selected ahead of over 100 nominees, in recognition of its “ground- breaking projects and trailblazing initiatives in the power sector in Asia.”
The company also won gold in two other categories – Solar Power Project of the Year for its 150 MW Tarlac Solar Farm, and Hybrid Power Plant of the Year for the Paluan Hybrid Solar Farm – at the awards ceremony held at the Conrad Hotel in Bangkok, Thailand on September 20.
The awards were judged by a panel of Asia’s power industry experts, including Mark Hutchison, Head of Gas & Power Consulting at Wood MacKenzie; Mike Thomas, Partner at The Lantau Group; John Yeap, Partner at Pinsent Masons; and John Goss, Managing Director of Ceejay AOD.
The Asian Power Awards committee recognized Solar Philippines, founded four years ago by its now 24-year-old CEO Leandro Leviste, because of the company’s vision and technological innovation in a country in much need of solutions to lower the cost of electricity.
In accepting the award, Leviste said: “We thank Asian Power for recognizing the importance of technological innovation in lowering the cost of power in the Philippines. As a vertically- integrated solar company, it is our mission to turn the country which has the highest cost electricity in Asia into the one with the lowest cost in Asia, to accelerate economic development and improve the lives of Filipinos.”
One of the company’s award-winning projects, the 150 MW Tarlac Solar Farm, is the largest solar farm in Southeast Asia and the first to be constructed after the Department of Energy announced the end of its Feed-in-Tariff program. The project will supply Meralco at Php 2.99/kWh, the lowest cost of any new power plant in Philippine history, and the lowest cost solar energy in East Asia.
The company’s other award-winning project is the Paluan Hybrid Solar Farm, the world’s largest Island Solar-Battery Micro-Grid, which will bring 24/7 power to a town so remote it was deemed unviable to serve by the electric cooperative. The project is the first large-scale island solar farm to use lithium-ion batteries in Asia, to generate cheaper and more reliable power than fossil fuel.
This award marks a banner month for Solar Philippines, which recently inaugurated its 800 MW factory in Batangas, the first Filipino solar panel factory, with President Rodrigo Duterte as guest of honor. The company also recently announced that it will shift its focus towards projects that accelerate economic development in rural areas and lower the cost of electricity for Filipinos.
“The Asian Power Awards strengthens our resolve to innovate to lower electricity rates in the Philippines, and share with all Filipinos and the Philippine power industry the good news, that our country no longer needs to have the most expensive fossil fueled electricity in Asia and, with the advances in renewable energy, can achieve the lowest electricity costs in the region,” Leviste said.