SMA Solar Technology
|Traded as||FWB: S92|
|Founder||Werner Klein, Günther Cramer (1952-2015), Peter Drews and Reiner Wettlaufer|
|Pierre-Pascal Urbon (CEO), Erik Ehrentraut (Chairman of the supervisory board)|
|Products||Inverters for solar energy systems|
|Revenue||€ 932.5 million|
Number of employees
|4,649 (December 2013)|
SMA Solar Technology AG (meaning System, Mess and Anlagentechnik) is a German solar energy equipment supplier founded in 1981 and headquartered in northern Niestetal, Hesse, Germany. SMA is a producer and manufacturer of solar inverters for photovoltaics systems with grid connection, off-grid power supply and backup operations.
The company has offices in 21 countries. SMA Solar Technology AG - as well as the SMA Railway Technology GmbH - was formed from the former SMA Technologie AG.
The company has 5,000 employees and generated worldwide sales of 932.5 million euros in 2013. The company is focused on the development and manufacture of technology systems for photovoltaics. Earlier, SMA included divisions for railway engineering, industrial computers and Innovative Energy Systems. SMA maintains sales and service offices in the US, Canada, Spain, Italy, France, Greece, China, South Korea, Thailand, Australia, Belgium, India, Japan, the Czech Republic and the UK as well as service offices in Portugal and the United Arab Emirates.
Its first foreign production site is located in Denver, Colorado, and maintains about 300 employees. In Ontario, Canada, SMA maintains a production and service location. In 2014, a sales and service location in South Africa was also be expanded into a production site.
In 2011, SMA acquired one of its long-standing suppliers of electronic components, the Polish company dtw Sp oo. Then in 2012, SMA acquired a majority stake in the Chinese company Jiangsu Zeversolar New Energy Co., Ltd., a solar inverter manufacturer, followed by the solar inverter operations of the Danish company Danfoss in 2013.
The company was founded by Werner Klein and board members Günther Cramer (1952-2015), Peter Drews and Reiner Wettlaufer as a separate company from the University of Kassel, subsequently renamed in 2004 to SMA Technologie AG. In 2006 Pierre-Pascal Urbon expanded the board. In June 2008, the name was changed to the present SMA Solar Technology in order to emphasize the focus on solar and the internationalization of the company. At the same time, the railway technology division was spun into SMA Railway Technology GmbH.
Larger changes to the Board became effective after the Annual General Meeting in June 2009. One of the founders, Reiner Wettlaufer, joined the Supervisory Board. Company news came as Chief Technology Officer Roland Grebe and as Chief of Marketing & Sales, Marko Werner, was added. In April 2010, the Board also had Jürgen Dolle in Human Resources and Uwe Hertel in Operations. Since the 2011 Annual General Meeting, CEO Urbon became responsible for the strategic direction of the company and the continuation of internationalization. Two founders, Drews and Cramer, then joined to the Supervisory Board. Uwe Hertel retired from the Board in 2011. In November 2012, Lydia summer joined the board and took over the Finance and Law responsibilities from Urbon, who previously held this portfolio in a dual role as Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer. Since May 2013, Lydia summer is also responsible for Human Resources and Labor Relations Director, after Jürgen Dolle was eliminated from the board.
SMA sells photovoltaic solar inverters as product families using the Sunny Boy name for home systems, Sunny Mini Central and Sunny Tripower for medium-sized plants through the multi-megawatt range and Sunny Central for ground-mounted systems and solar farms, often from 100 kW to the several-megawatt range for feeding into the utility grid. SMA also makes the Sunny Island for independent, stand-alone systems that are grid-tied or work with batteries. The inverter products are complemented by components for system monitoring and data analysis.
The SMA Railway Technology subsidiary develops and manufactures power electronic components and systems, particularly local and long distance rail systems.
The company's stock shares are listed on the Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange since June 27, 2008. The company's stock has been qualified for the technology index TecDax. Since September 2008, the stock has been part of ÖkoDAX and was listed in 2009 in the 30 Index Global photovoltaic. Currently, 29 percent of the shares are in free float.
In 2000, SMA was the winner in the Grand Prix of the middle class of the Oskar Patzelt Foundation Award and a Premier-finalist in 2004. In 2008, SMA was awarded the German Fairness Award. In 2010, SMA reached Germany's second place in the category Companies 2,001-5,000 employees and third place in European Companies with more than 500 employees. For both 2011 and 2012 the company won Germany's Best Employer in the category for Companies over 5,001 employees. SMA was also regarded as a Top Employer for Engineers in 2011.
Moreover, SMA Solar Factory 1 because of its CO 2 neutral-production was awarded the Energy Efficiency Award of 2010 from the German Energy Agency and chosen for the 2011 Germany - Land of Ideas award.