Ikea launches solar panels in the Netherlands

Swedish furniture giant brings residential solar technology to Dutch, with expansion planned to seven more countries

Pic: Ikea

Pic: Ikea

By Sophie Yeo

Ikea has launched a range of residential solar panels in the Netherlands.

It is the second country to stock the panels, after the UK pioneered the Swedish furniture giant’s venture into green home improvement in September 2013.

A 2.5kW system, plus installation, will set back a typical homeowner €4,400 – but this can quickly be recouped through a 10.5% annual return on investment, says Hanergy, the company that makes the panels.

”It’s one of the most attractive investments that a family can make,” said Toby Ferenczi, CEO of Hanergy Solar UK.

The residential panels will be stocked first at the Ikea store in Haarlem, before being rolled out across all 12 branches.

Ikea will introduce the technology in seven more countries in the next eighteen months, including Switzerland, the company announced at the UN’s climate summit in September.

Ferenczi told RTCC that solar-friendly policy in the Netherlands had motivated the Dutch rollout.

”There is a strong solar market here which is driven by a policy called net metering, which enables homeowners to monetise the electricity that is exported to the grid,” he said.

In the Netherlands, Solar energy has grown from 0.1 TWh in 2000 to 0.39 TWh in 2011, according to the country’s Central Bureau of Statistics, though in 2011, it only contributed 1.5% of its renewable energy.

Stores in the Netherlands will now have rooms dedicated to the panels, complete with solar experts.

IKEA Netherlands sustainability manager Lisen Wirén said: “It’s the perfect solution for our customers, who want to live sustainably and save energy at the same time, without too high an investment.”

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