H.I.G. Growth Partners News
Antenna Group (for Suniva)
Former SunPower COO Pai Joins Board of U.S.-Based Solar Manufacturer Suniva
NORCROSS, Ga. - March 3, 2009 - Suniva, Inc., a manufacturer of high value crystalline silicon solar cells, today announced the addition of Mr. PM Pai to its board of directors. Pai is the former Chief Operating Officer (COO) of SunPower and has more than 30 years of manufacturing and mass production experience in a range of industries. Pai will impart his expertise as Suniva streamlines supply chain operations, increases production and expands marketing for its high efficiency, low-cost monocrystalline solar cells manufactured in the USA.
"PM is one of the most highly regarded minds in manufacturing and is credited as a major force in turning SunPower into a leader in the global solar industry," said John Baumstark, CEO of Suniva. "Suniva's solar cell technology was specifically designed to increase efficiency without high cost and PM's expertise and advice will be most valuable in helping to bring our new technology to market quickly and to establish market leadership."
From April 2005 to July 2008, Pai was the COO of SunPower and was responsible for strategic planning, production expansion and supply chain development on a worldwide basis. Prior to SunPower, Pai served four years as president of Moser Baer India Ltd., the world's second largest manufacturer of optical storage media (CDs, DVDs, etc.).
At Suniva, Pai will work closely with Dr. Ajeet Rohatgi, founder and CTO of Suniva, Dr. Stephen Shea, VP of manufacturing for Suniva and Dr. Daniel Meier, VP of R&D for Suniva. On the board, Pai is joined by Dr. Kedar Gupta, former GT Solar founder and CEO, New Enterprise Associates (NEA) partners Harry Weller and Ravi Viswanathan and Jon Sakoda, as well as Suniva CEO John Baumstark and Dr. Rohatgi.
"With Stephen, Daniel and Ajeet, Suniva's technical team already has over one hundred years of photovoltaic experience," said Pai. "Coupling this expertise with the business acumen of John Baumstark and the rest of the executive team, Suniva has quickly secured a great reputation and enviable market position. I look forward to helping them achieve great success on the path to grid parity."
Today's announcement comes in the midst of a 200% capacity expansion at Suniva, taking the company's first factory from 32MWp to 96MWp in 2009. Suniva's first 32MWp manufacturing line began producing solar cells late last year, only six months after the site was selected. Next year, the current factory will meet maximum production capacity of 175MWp.
Based in Norcross, GA, Suniva manufactures high efficiency crystalline silicon solar cells with low cost techniques in order to make solar-generated electricity cost- competitive with fossil fuels. The company leverages exclusive licenses to critical patents and patent-pending intellectual property developed by founder and CTO Dr. Ajeet Rohatgi at the Georgia Institute of Technology's University Center of Excellence for Photovoltaic Research, which is funded by the Department of Energy. Led by an internationally regarded team of business executives and photovoltaic scientists, Suniva sells its advanced solar cell technology worldwide, renewing U.S. leadership in the new energy economy. For additional information, please visit http://www.suniva.com.