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Cover Story | August 2018

Expect the market to witness all-round growth

Delhi-based battery manufacturer <span style="font-weight: bold;">Anshul Gupta, Director, Okaya Power </span>says he is committed to launching products for the mass market. He feels that the ability to manufacture at full capacity, availability of low-interest loans and restrictions on cheap imports will provide a boost to the storage segment in India.<br /> <br /> <span style="font-weight: bold;">Elucidate the potential for energy storage in a country like India.</span><br /> The storage market in India is moving towards a bright future. Some reports have even estimated that the energy storage market for off-grid renewable energy in India would be worth Rs 165 billion by 2022. The enhanced penetration of renewable energy systems across different segments has provided a promising growth opportunity to the energy storage market in the country as 100 per cent backup is a prerequisite for the continuous supply of electricity even during the evening hours. As a part of our effort to significantly contribute to the ongoing revolution in energy storage technologies, Okaya has surged ahead in this segment with its advanced leadûacid batteries and lithium power packs.<br /> <br /> <span style="font-weight: bold;">What are some of the energy storage solutions that you offer to the industries you service?</span><br /> Okaya is working continuously to introduce new technologies in the energy storage solutions, particularly in the solar energy storage segment. As a top-notch battery brand, we offer a wide range of solar batteries that are in high demand in the market due to their easy and efficient working capabilities. Okaya has introduced customised solutions for lithium battery requirements in the segment. Moreover, we have already achieved distinct technological advancements in cell structure, while simultaneously introducing several new innovations in the designing of our exclusive energy storage solution modules. <br /> <br /> Consequently, we enjoy a dominant market share in the solar power, two-wheeler, electric rickshaw and UPS segments. Ever since the launch of Pradhan <br /> Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojna or Saubhagya by the government, the use of solar energy across the country has become mainstream. The programme has been instrumental in highlighting the huge potential for renewable power in both rural and urban areas of the country. Okaya is committed to contributing to this noble initiative by launching innovative products for the mass market. <br /> <br /> <span style="font-weight: bold;">As demand matures, which sectors, in your opinion, will drive the expansion of the storage market in India?</span><br /> Solar energy, microgrids, electric vehicles and UPS are among the major product segments that will drive the expansion of the storage market in India on the back of an immense growth in demand. In the past decade, Okaya has followed a holistic approach to make a significant impact in the storage market. <br /> <br /> During the period, the industry has also considerably gained from the support provided by the federal government. We, therefore, expect the market to witness a widespread growth. At Okaya, we have successfully developed specific pricing and product strategies for our ambitious expansion in this particular segment.<br /> <br /> <span style="font-weight: bold;">What are some of the main challenges before the manufacturers of storage solutions?</span><br /> Today, the biggest challenge facing the manufacturers of storage solutions in India is that since they are unable to take full benefit of the economies of scale. Most of them operate at well below their full capacity. Unavailability of low-interest loans for the segment has further curtailed the growth prospects of the industry. Alongside, cheap imports from different countries is another major issue.<br /> <br /> <span style="font-weight: bold;">What are your expectations from the proposed National Energy Storage Mission that is expected to be established in the 2018–19 fiscal?</span><br /> We expect the proposed National Energy Storage Mission to provide the much-needed encouragement to indigenous battery manufacturers like us. We understand that we have a major role to play there since the renewable sources of energy like sunlight cannot meet the peak demand round-the-clock. Solar energy generation may be at its peak at noon, but unless stored, it will not be available to light up homes at night. Therefore, batteries are the only solution to achieve the true objectives of this mission.<br /> <br /> <span style="font-weight: bold;">- Manish Pant</span><br />
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