June 16 is a reference day for Brazilian and Spanish soccer fans. On that day in 1950, the legendary Maracanã stadium was inaugurated in the first World Cup hosted by Brazil. In 2010, on that same day, Spain lost against Switzerland 1-0 in its debut at the World Cup hosted by South Africa.
Just two hours after that defeat, the first meeting began that would give rise to SER. The five-time Brazilian champions David Fontes and Murilo Sampaio consoled their Spanish partner, David Rodríguez, with some irony. «Don’t be discouraged, maybe Spain will advance to the next round after all,» David Fontes and I joked. And in fact that’s what happened. Spain was not discouraged and 25 days later in overtime, Iniesta would score the goal that would make Spain a World Cup champion for the first time in history.
That is how SER was born, an assembly of ideas, practices and cultures; the very same people who created SER also led the company during its first decade, and we plan to keep it that way for the next ten years.
In 2010, photovoltaic solar energy in Brazil was only a theoretical source of generating energy; it did not exist on the electrical grid, nor in the 10-year plans, nor in public administrations or large corporations.
Theoretical studies indicated that photovoltaic solar energy would still take many years to reach Brazil, its cost being the main obstacle. During these ten years, the integration of competition to solar energy has decreased it from 200 US$/MWh to 20 US$/MWh.
In 2010, we designed our strategy to develop 30 MW projects in highly irradiated areas, with panels mounted on a fixed structure and Thin Film modules, thinking about how to make CAPEX as low as possible. That year, we bought and rented land where some of the most competitive solar power projects in Brazil are located.
There was no regulated market, much less a free market for solar power, so the pioneers began to meet with Abinee, where the first task force for promoting solar energy was created. It was not until years later that Absolar was created, where we were one of the eight founding partners, when the sector began to gain space and earn representation.
Now, we already have 2 GW in plants in operation, under construction or finishing the development phase to begin construction and we are heading towards finishing 5 GW development at the end of 2020. During this 10-year period, we have become a technical referent in the sector, with long-term commitments to our partners and customers.
We are participating in efforts to turn solar into a leading energy source in Brazil by internationalizing our search for solutions to adapt them to our market, increasing the level of digitization at all stages of the company’s development and continuing to train our team, so we can keep advancing in the next 10 years as one of the main players in the solar industry in Latin America.
Murilo Sampaio, CEO