In Tune with the Local Connected to the World Contents p1 p2,3 p4 p5 p6 p7 p8,9
Regional Newsletter for Southeast Europe and Middle East JUNE 2010 The Online Executive News for Corporate Leaders
“Green Economy and Sustainable Development”
Welcome to the 9th issue of our Executive Newswire
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that have become the new hype and receive
to the Talent equation. Let’s look at some interest-
a growing attention in business headlines. Al-
ing facts. Green Economy is supposed to create
though Green Economy is understood by most
numerous jobs in the future as you will see in the
people, Sustainability is not so clear. There are
article “The Green Energy Jobs Parity” which sum-
various standard deﬁnitions that can be quoted,
marizes recent surveys in the EU and the USA; this
however none is generally accepted. One of the
claim remains to be proven. Secondly, according
deﬁnitions we found describes, in very simple
to a recent survey by MIT, 57% of private sector
words, sustainability “as meeting the needs of
companies expect employee interest in sustain-
today without sacriﬁcing future generations’ abil-
ability to impact their organizations and 37%
ity to meet needs”. We like this deﬁnition because
already highlight sustainability initiatives in re-
it emphasizes not only the economic but also
cruiting; therefore, companies that invest in sus-
the social impact of the term.
tainability may have an advantage on hiring and
novice approach to sustainability refers only to environmental and regulatory terms, with any
Renewable Energy investment Opportunities in Greece Green Energy Investment Outlook Commitment to sustainable development for a successful future The changing Energy Sector in Romania & SEE Europe Serbia, a land of great Wind Potentia Stanton Chase News Going Green to Become Greener in Consumer Sector Sowing the seeds of a competitive workforce Face To Face … with Konstantinos Lafkas
Opportunities in Greece” by Thanassis Tsantilas,
of Green Economy and Sustainable Development
landscape, despite the fact that today, the most
Würth Solar. Plentiful, Renewable and Hard to Maintain. A Case Study
nomic growth cycle.
and Sustainable Development”. Two concepts
nomic, social and personal issues in the business
Right people, Right place, Right time, Right product. A Lean Management philosophy leading to Global Success
(see the articles “Renewable Energy Investment
Some of you may wonder of what is the impact
tainability will be much deeper aﬀecting eco-
The Green Energy Jobs Parity
that these initiatives will trigger the next eco-
dedicated to the hot issues of “Green Economy
Accordingly, the business implications of sus-
retaining talent. A new “War for Talent”? Finally, business titles like Chief Sustainability Oﬃcer, Director of Climate & Energy Strategy, VP of Environmental Aﬀairs that did not exist a few years ago, become more and more common in top corporations regardless of their speciﬁc sector.
beneﬁts stemming mainly from brand or im-
Our world is changing. The dimensions of Green
age enhancement. It is important to notice that
Economy and Sustainable Development are
during the current recession, companies and
much greater and aﬀect all market sectors; not
governments did not abandon their green in-
only the AES (Alternative Energy Sources) pro-
vestments, but on the contrary persisted, hoping
ducers like Wind and Photovoltaic companies
Energy General Director at Rokas Renewables and “Sowing the Seeds of a Competitive Workforce” by Ilias Garidis COO at Heliosphera). The investment world is highly focusing on the AES sector as Mr Orestis Millas, the Investment Director of the Private Equity Arm of National Bank of Greece conﬁrms in his article “Green Energy Investment Outlook”. Less obvious to the novice, is that sustainability is of top priority to traditional industrial ﬁrms like Lafarge as you will read in the “Commitment to sustainable development for a successful future” by Pierre Deleplanque, Heracles Managing Director. Finally, consumers become green-conscious and their support for sustainable products and company practices is growing worldwide according to “Going Green to become Greener in Consumer Sector” by Nancy Mathioudakis, Partner – Consumer Sector in Stanton Chase International. We are certain that you will enjoy reading and more importantly that you will get a clearer understanding of Green Economy and Sustainable Development.
“Many thanks to all the contributors of this issue...”
The Green Energy Jobs Parity By Vana Mehleri
The never – ending need
Associate Consultant, Industrial and Energy Practice Groups, Stanton Chase Athens
Demand vs. Supply
impairing growth in green industries, such as energy
for energy/utilities solu- Some recent studies on the economic eﬀects of RES tions services, along with a and their reﬂection on Green Energy careers and oprenewed interest to make portunities help us clarify both the issue of “demand”, as such services better and
well as of “supply” of executives:
alternative sources, have behalf of the European Commission’s Directoratecombined to open up a General Energy and Transport, is the ﬁrst study to portunities for executives.
assess the economic eﬀects of supporting RES, looking not only at jobs in the RES sector itself, but taking into account its impact on all sec-
size and quality of the give a signiﬁcant boost to the talent pool also comes in economy and the number of the limelight.
jobs in the EU. Improving cur-
electric power, smart grid, energy eﬃcient vehicles and biofuels development.
Eﬃciency: Economic Drivers for the 21st Century” released by the American Solar Energy Society, the renewable energy and energy eﬃciency industries could yield up to 40 million jobs by 2030. These include engineering positions as well as new jobs in manufacturing, construction, accounting and management. The report also states that these industries
As demand for Energy/RES tors of the economy. Based on Executives arises dramati- this study, policies that support cally, the question of the renewable energy sources (RES)
eﬃcient buildings and construction, renewables,
Based on the report “Renewable Energy and Energy
more eﬃcient through The Employ-RES study, which was conducted on
wealth of potential job op-
& Konstantinos Zaﬁropoulos Partner, Stanton Chase Athens
A total of 119,000 jobs over the next two years will be created for solar panel installation, manufacturing components and solar power plant construction in the US market. (Solar Energy Industries Association, www.seia.org)
have already produced 8.5 million jobs in the U.S. The Hellenic Association of Photovoltaic Companies (HELAPCO) has created a com-
rent policies so that the target of 20% RES in ﬁnal energy
prehensive report regarding new job opportunities in the
consumption in 2020 can be achieved will deliver 2.8
ﬁeld of RES in Greece. Based on this study, geothermal
million jobs in the RES sector in total and will provide a
power, photovoltaics and biomass create more work-
net eﬀect of about 410,000 additional jobs and 0.24%
ing years per unit of installed capacity. However when
additional gross domestic product (GDP).
the main criteria for assessing job trends is “produced
According to the Survey of the Energy Industry on Green Jobs (2009) of the AEE (Association of Energy Engineers), there is a growing demand for energy eﬃciency, green collar and renewable energy professionals in light of the following trends: (41%) of the energy professionals plan to retire in the
capacity” then photovoltaic is by far the best choice, with hydroelectric and thermo-solar taking the second place. Regarding working years per invested capital, geothermal power, biomass and wind energy are proved best choices.
The talent shortage
next ten years.
As clearly indicated from the surveys, there’s a recent
(72%) indicate a heightened shortage of qualiﬁed
rise and a foreseen dramatic escalation in the demand
professionals in the energy eﬃciency and renewable
for Energy sector executives in the coming decade. An
energy ﬁelds in the next ﬁve years.
example is revealing: Due to shortage of skillful and ex-
(70%) indicate a need for national and state train-
perienced blue and white collars, most of the new 70,000
ing of “Green Jobs” to address job shortages that are
job positions in local wind parks in Great Britain, where actually created though not exactly where someone
would expect, despite all commitments made
there will undoubtedly always be a need for
Executives really need all of these leader-
by the government. In fact, the positions
electricity, another is that it is at the forefront
ship skills, from ﬂexibility to consensus-
were created in Denmark where the shift to
of emerging “green” initiatives. Executives
building and engagement, regardless of
Green Energy has started 30 years ago, while
leading such companies will be faced with
which area within energy/utilities they
the country holds today the leading position
the opportunity to make an impact on so-
choose to transition. If someone is con-
both in Clean Technology innovation and de-
ciety as well as on their company’s bottom
ﬁdent in working and integrating deci-
velopment, as well as in the construction of
line. While being a part of such change may
sion-making across diﬀerent functions, a
Wind Parks. As a consequence, in Great Brit-
sound intriguing, it can be challenging for
transition to the utility/energy business
ain it has been realized that the Green Econ-
executives to communicate to energy/utili-
won’t be a shock.
omy and especially Wind Energy have started
ties company management that they’re the
Executives able to transfer ideas across
late compared to the rest of the Europe.
right person for the job. Making the transi-
this divide will be valued contributors
tion from one industry into the energy/utili-
and should expect successful careers.
ties ﬁeld has been a tough task, and contin-
These days, such opportunities are abun-
ues to be, for a variety of reasons:
dant; and they can provide an executive
According to the Alliance to Save Energy, the energy eﬃciency measures will create 100,000 or more new energy jobs in the next two years in the US market. (www.ase.org) It is evident, therefore, that a global strategy for talent will be as important to many companies –even countries- as a global strategy for sourcing or manufacturing is today. The growth of knowledge-intensive industries underscores the importance and scarcity of well trained employees. The investment boom throughout most resource industries has driven a huge demand for engineers and other technical employees. Although the number of students enrolling in technical programs is increasing and the suitability of engineers from developing countries is improving, gaps in quality and experience persist. The challenge of energy and materials companies will be to seed the next generation of engineers while, ﬁnding clever ways to make up for today’s shortages.
Importing Talent: evaluating the transferable skill set
Energy/utility companies traditionally
with a life-long career.
view skills and knowledge as non-transferable. The business tends to view exper-
The years ahead will be rather demanding
tise as something gained from working
for companies in the energy and materi-
in the exact industry segment you are
als sectors as the forces of change shift the
transitioning to, “Oil experience is valued
fundamental circumstances of competition.
by oil people; electric experience by elec-
Executives who wish to exploit these trends
trical people; water experience by water
must keep a watchful eye on them and be
people.” But that is changing, as energy/
ready to respond swiftly to their implications.
utility companies recognize the value
The growth in the RES arena will continue for
executives with strong overall leadership
many years and will carry an executive for
skills can bring to the table. “Although
the whole of his career.
historically most major utilities had a tendency to promote from within their own ranks, more and more they are reaching to both utility and non-utility executives”.
Assessing accurately the existing talent pool and evaluating correctly the
Having the ability to balance the need
transferable skill set required in order
to adapt to the culture and, at the same
to be eﬀective in importing new talent,
time, know how hard to push for needed
are the major challenges and the
change is critical for success. Along those
foundation of business success for every
same lines, the ability to assess the organization and its people in relation to the business challenges would be a priority
Energy sector company; both today and in the near future.
for a new executive.
While one of the beneﬁts of working in the Energy industry is its relative stability since
Right people, Right place, Right time, Right product A Lean Management philosophy leading to Global Success How do you create a startup and steer it into a successful $700 million solar industry empire within 8 years? We talk to Mr. Grigoris Spanoudakis European President of Canadian Solar (NASDAQ: CSIQ), a vertically-integrated manufacturer of ingots, wafers, cells, solar modules and custom-designed solar power applications, delivering solar power products of uncompromising quality to customers worldwide. Yannis Nakopoulos: What was Canadian Solar’s initial product concept? Gregory Spanoudakis: We started with a solar automotive battery maintenance product, also very specialized engineering application products using solar technology. YN: What led you in choosing that speciﬁc market segment to start with? GS: Both Shawn Qu and I have come out of the solar and semi conductor industries. We identiﬁed a market niche and we were at the right place at the right time to beneﬁt from a need that was apparent. We also developed the right product, as it was speciﬁcally designed with automotive speciﬁcations in mind, realizing an almost zero failure rate on batteries and cars using this solar charger. Today, we continue to produce and sell the car battery charger. Along with this we also produced GPS Tracking Systems, Street Lights, Garden Lights, Marine Lights, Traﬃc Lights and Solar Home Systems for various clients. All these products along with our Grid connect and oﬀ-grid products make for a deep and wide product oﬀering, each unique in its own way and each contributing to our overall business. YN: What was the key to unlocking the grid and oﬀ-grid module market? GS: We started swimming among sharks in 2004 (laughs). In the beginning, a key for CSI was its local presence in many countries, as without it, warranty service and claims service were very diﬃcult. The model of doing busi-
ness, though, has changed as interest in solar power has begun to reach industrial scale. A lot more is going into the project channel, with Project developers buying directly from module manufacturers anywhere on the globe. It was a very localised business in the past, now, it’s a lot more globalised. It’s not just national markets with a boom. With a more comprehensive understanding of our customers’ markets, we are better suited to align our activities to meet the projected demand and requests, no matter where it may occur. You need to maintain your ﬂexibility and pace in order to respond to the ever evolving market; and you need to think globally, yet be prepared at all times to act locally. YN: Canadian Solar is one of the fastest growing companies in the industry – what’s the most important attribute of your unprecedented success? GS: A lot of hard work by a very dedicated team of professionals who are committed to excellence and customer service. You need to have the right people. Every team member contributes in their own way and collectively we are able to meet the expectations of our customers. It really is all about teamwork and a very strong desire to make a diﬀerence and win. Remember that there is no ‘I’ in ‘we’. YN: How do you ensure growth? GS: The foundation of any good organization is people, training, education, facilities. It’s a place for the promotion of people who develop along with the company. In our
Who is Mr. Gregory Spanoudakis?
President of European Operations for Canadian Solar Inc.
Mr. Gregory Spanoudakis is the President of European Operations for Canadian Solar Inc. Prior to that, he had been the Vice President for International Sales and Marketing. Mr. Spanoudakis has been involved in the semiconductor and solar power industries for the past 21 years. He was a Senior Executive with Future Electronics, one of the world’s largest distributors of semiconductor components, where he headed the International Division and the Export Development program from November 1988 to May 1999. Mr. Spanoudakis attended The University of Essex, in Colchester, England and the Sir George William University (now Concordia University) in Montreal, Canada graduating with a bachelor’s degree in business in 1981. In 1987, he received his MBA degree with a focus on International Business Development from Concordia University in Montreal, Canada.
newly built facilities, we brought in people from the surrounding areas, gave them tools, and helped them to develop their skill set; it was an opportunity for them and they took it. Additionally, Canadian Solar adheres to the highest manufacturing and quality standards in the industry. We have more than 100 scientists and engineers who have been involved in the solar industry for years; a ISO17025 qualiﬁed manufacturer-owned testing lab; and a long-term strategic R&D partnership with DuPont, ECN, and the University of Toronto. We have invested heavily in our R&D and quality systems, which has paid us back ‘in spades’ in terms of customer satisfaction and repeat customers. We also have a policy of using the most environmentally friendly products in our processes and maintain a recycling program on all materials (where possible). This not only helps in cost-cutting but more importantly lessens our environmental impact footprint. It is everyone’s social responsibility to do their part in the company to help and suggest ideas and ways that we can reduce, recycle and reuse wherever possible. What else do you need? (laughs). YN: How much competition do you face and do you have any strategy in place to hold on to your market position? GS: Competition is what keeps you sharp and non-complacent and is necessary for future growth, and we welcome it in some ways. Especially when others try to emulate or imitate you, which we all know is the most ‘sincere form of ﬂattery’. Our strategy? Try to lead the pack with continued, excellent product quality, incomparable sales and after-sales service from a strong team committed to excellence in all our dedicated markets. Every one of my European team members speaks at least three languages and can back-up at least one other team member in his market. Everybody knows about what members of his or her team are doing at any one time through internal communication and weekly internal team meetings. Knowledge is power and we believe in empowering our people. Market intelligence is also an important factor and who better to supply this but your dealers and partners through close contact and relations built over a long time. We need to continue to do what we do best and listen to the needs of our customers and the marketplace.
By Vassillis Zorbas, Country Manager, Greece
Würth Solar is the world’s leading full-range supplier of solar installations based on CIS technology. Würth Solar (a part of the international Würth Group) has been producing CIS modules for more than 10 years now and has been working intensively on the integration of components to yield tailored overall systems. Würth Solar covers the entire spectrum ranging from roof mounted systems for residential buildings and commercial facilities, architecturally sophisticated facade solutions and other custom solutions, right through to turnkey solar power plants. Würth Group employs 58.000 persons in 84 countries and has a yearly turnover of over 7.5 Billion Euros (2009). Würth Solar has constructed over 30 MW of PV projects only in Spain. Also, many MW of rooftop projects are installed every year in Germany and all over Europe. The company also has operations in Italy, France, Spain an Greece. In Greece, the company has been operating for nearly two years and is currently in the position to negotiate the undertaking the EPC contract for a number of important PV project portfolios whose owners’ have appreciated the high standard of technical expertise and the healthy economic proﬁle of the company as well as the comprehensive service portfolio Würth Solar is oﬀering.
Who is Vassilis Zorbas Vassilis Zorbas was born in Athens in 1974, he studied Mechanical Engineering in the National Technical University of Athens and holds an MBA from Cardiﬀ Business School. Currently he holds the Country Manager position for Würth Solar Greece, responsible for PV Power Plant projects. Vassilis started his career holding various managerial positions in Unisys and Procter & Gamble Greece. Since 2006 he has been actively involved in the renewable energy sector doing project development and project management for Greek and foreign investors. Though his specialization is in PV, he has also been involved in project development for Wind and CSP projects in Greece
Plentiful, Renewable and Hard to Maintain A Case Study
By Yannis Nakopoulos
Principal Consultant, Stanton Chase Athens
& Vana Mehleri
Associate Consultant, Industrial and Energy Practice Groups, Stanton Chase Athens
ur client, a global leader in Power Generation with presence in 63 countries, has managed to gain a leading position in the Greek energy market. Having stated its emphatic presence in the larger and most important Energy development projects and having succeeded a local market share greater than 50%, the company seeks to create a considerably more efﬁcient maintenance and operation network in Greece able to support its aggressive business growth plans and secure its position in a dynamically evolving and highly competitive RES market. In order to realize this business strategy, the company assigned us with the task of identifying a new Operations Director able to respond to the aforementioned challenge. After careful examination of the client’s organization speciﬁc needs, current situation and dynamics, our Search was focused on multinational Vendors of Power Generating equipment, with a track record of successfully running large Customer
Service, After Sales and Maintenance Departments. Our successful quest and leadership assessment resulted in attracting those Executives who were not only technically competent, but who were also in position to be quickly acknowledged by the large team of subordinates as undisputed leaders, thus acting as catalysts of change: updating the performance mindset, changing the working processes and methods, operating effectively in a matrix environment handling multiple stakeholder relationships and maintaining efﬁcient management control in a geographically dispersed environment. Furthermore, we thoroughly assessed those executives who were able to handle effectively high stress levels, set clear priorities and be in position to enable team performance. Fore mostly, they should possess a highly developed health & safety mentality and at the same time be in position to effectively control costs, thus bringing signiﬁcant bottom line impact.
and in the Balkan region.
INVESTMENT Opportunities in Greece by Thanasis Tsantilas, Energy General Director at Rokas Renewables
he environmental problem is undeniable and preserving the planet has become a priority worldwide. Although EU leaders failed to conclude on a binding agreement to reduce emissions during the Copenhagen Summit last December, small or large scale eﬀorts to promote environmental awareness and lifestyle so as to avoid waste of energy take place on a daily basis. The citizens of the world seem to be waking up realizing that the conditions and the quality of living is far from developed. On the other hand, the energy needs of modern societies would be diﬃcult to be reduced. We, therefore, need to provide a comprehensive and workable solution to the dual problem of modern civilization that would ensure better life but not to the disadvantage of the environment. Nature seems to give us the real solution to this through the development of Renewable Energy Sources (RES).
The importance of balancing between environmental viability and energy sustainability has been understood in our country as well. Greece is a geographical location, natural and climate conditions, grace exploitation of renewable energy, perhaps, more than in any other EU country. For example, the strong and constant winds, especially on the islands, accessibility to the ridges and the absence of extreme weather condi-
tions (such as storms or hurricanes) make the Greek landscape ideal for installation and operation of wind parks. Furthermore, Greece is the country with the most sunshine hours/days in Europe, registering an average annual return between 1200-1900 kWh per square meter. Rokas Renewables has long presence in the Greek market and its main activity is electricity generation using RES, mainly wind power. In 1998, the company installed and operated the ﬁrst private wind farm and currently operates 17 wind farms with total installed capacity of 217,3 MW occupying the ﬁrst position in the ranking of installed capacity in the market for Renewable Energy Sources in Greece. Rokas functions under the umbrella of Iberdrola Renovables since 2004; Iberdrola Renovables, the world’s largest Wind Power Company by installed capacity, is an international benchmark for renewable energies, with nearly 11.000MW of installed capacity in 23 countries. Rokas’ investment plan includes signiﬁcant clean power generation projects, among which the “Aegean Link” which contemplates the interconnection of Chios, Lesvos and Limnos islands with the mainland. At the end of 2009, Greece had installed 1.087MW while the country target is to reach
close to 10.000MW of installed capacity using renewable energy by 2020. The target set for the next decade seems ambitious since the progress in the sector for our country over the last three years is extremely low. Bureaucracy, lack of political will and reactions of local communities have been the key factors resulting in country delaying its green growth. We therefore need to accelerate efforts towards sustainable development. Energy production is also the only sector of the economy that Greece have placed € 2,5 billion in direct investment led by renewable energies. The promotion of the new Bill regarding RES in order to shorten licensing procedures for projects and the coordination of actions for the upgrade and expansion of the grid are the undeniable proof of the intentions of the state to eﬀectively lead the «Green Development» in Greece. Priority is also given to the development of private productive investments, thus the forthcoming review of the Development Law. Furthermore, the development of renewable energy sources is also the solution to the dual problem of Economy – Environment, since it ensures the output from the ﬁnancial crisis with the prospect of continued investment growth, creating and securing jobs, while maintaining and improving environment.
Who is Mr. Thanasis Tsantilas? Mr. Thanasis Tsantilas was born in 1963 in Athens, he is a Mechanical Engineer and he holds an MBA from Henley University. He has been working in ROKAS RENEWABLES since 1989 holding various top management positions and he is exceptionally experienced in Energy and Electromechanical activities. On 2006 he became Energy General Director while he is the Chairman of all the subsidiary companies of the Wind Energy division. In his role as Energy General Director he is coordinating development, construction and operation of RES plants. He is also Deputy Chairman of the Hellenic Electricity Association (H.EL.AS.) and the Development Association of Electricity Producers (D.A.E.P.).
Orestis Millas, Investment Director at NBGI Private Equity*
The NBGI Private Equity Group is a leading European private equity and venture capital investment ﬁrm founded in 2000, currently managing approximately €900 million across a number of diﬀerent funds. The NBGI Private Equity Group’s funds invest in a range of diﬀerent private equity sectors including lower mid-market buy-outs, growth capital for small and medium-sized companies, venture capital for technology businesses, real estate and energy.
lobal commitments to reducing carbon emissions and climate change have opened up a series of investment opportunities in Southeast Europe. Several countries in the Balkan Peninsula, both members and non-members of the EU, have introduced support frameworks to encourage the development of renewable energy. The support frameworks usually take the form of either direct feed-in-tariﬀs where green energy producers (typically using wind, solar or hydro power) receive a preferential guaranteed electricity price for their production or receive a market-based price for the power produced, coupled with some other form of “green” bonus such as green certiﬁcates that electricity suppliers are required to purchase.
power plant on that location. While as mentioned previously this is a low cost activity, it is also one that can be time-consuming, fairly bureaucratic and also high risk since there are a number of issues that can come up during the permitting process, quite often related to environmental issues and also access to the national electrical grid. Once a site is fully permitted and ready to build, the risk-return proﬁle is reduced and reﬂects mostly that of an infrastructure project. The construction risk can be mitigated with careful pre-construction analysis and tight EPC contracts. Nevertheless, some risk remains, especially on the small hydro power plants which can often be more diﬃcult civil engineering projects.
of operating power plants. However there is good scope for both greenﬁeld development and construction of new power plants and signiﬁcant interest from a number of institutional investors. The main limiting factors presently for increased development of the sector are (i) ﬁnancial; support regimes quite often leave investors exposed to foreign exchange risk and regulatory changes which also hinders debt ﬁnance, and (ii) technical; across the region grids are usually in need of modernization and strengthening in order to cope with the intermittent nature of renewable energy. With the above issues addressed, we would expect signiﬁcant and continued investment interest in renewable energy in the region. * Orestis is an Investment Director in NBGI Private Equity,
This commitment to a low-carbon development has created a range of opportunities for investors with diﬀerent risk-returns proﬁles. On the high-risk side, there is ab-initio greenﬁeld development of potential sites suitable for wind, solar or hydro power plants. This has been so far a mainly low cost activity as the main eﬀort involved entails identifying suitable locations, securing land access to such sites (either through land purchases or long-term leases) and securing all the necessary permits in order to be ready to install a
Once the power plant is constructed, risk is even further reduced. The expected production of the plant should have been reasonably estimated in energy yield assessments conducted prior to construction, leading to overall stable revenues, always subject to seasonal and yearly variations which can vary signiﬁcantly before reverting to long-term means.
responsible for its Energy Fund. Prior to joining NBGI Private Equity in July 2008, Orestis held senior positions at Citigroup and BNP Paribas where he originated, structured and closed more than EUR 7 billion in structured ﬁnancings across a range of asset classes. In his last position at Citigroup Orestis was also involved in the risk management of a loan book of over
Given the early nature of the renewable industry in Southeast Europe, there are presently fairly limited opportunities for acquisitions
EUR 2 billion. Orestis is an Economics graduate with an MSc from the London School of Economics.
Commitment to sustainable development for a successful future
usiness success for the long term is not possible without
Heracles for the improvement of safety are signiﬁcant, as in 2007-9
respect towards the environment and corporate
the number of lost time injuries decreased by 42%.
responsibility. Social progress, environmental protection
and respect for the local communities are basic priorities for the
Managing our environmental impact
successful operation of a modern business and a more sustainable
Having developed a systematic way of managing our environmental
future. As a leading industrial company and cement producer, our
impact, Heracles has a permanent target of conducting
operations are directly linked to some of the major challenges that
environmental audits to the 100% of its sites by skilled and
need to be faced for the future of the planet, especially climate
expert teams, within the last four years. The relevant program for
change. In this area, but also in other important areas such as
environmental audits of our plants, including limestone quarries and
biodiversity, Heracles, a member of the Lafarge Group can and has
the port facilities is of major importance since it provides account for
to play an important role.
our performance and the progress made.
Sustainability Ambitions 2012: Our roadmap
Cement production may generate dust emissions. Heracles has set
The Sustainability Ambitions 2012 are our response to those challenges and the company’s roadmap for sustainable development. They constitute speciﬁc targets which cover crucial issues of sustainable development and are connected with the company’s performance on management, social and environmental level. They are a program of improvement for the medium term and include measurable targets and action plans for: employee Health & Safety, competition, stakeholder relationships,
the target of reducing the dust emissions of cement plants by 40% over the period 2005-2012, as part of our Sustainability Ambitions 2012. Achieving this goal requires signiﬁcant investment. Since 2006, Heracles is implementing an environmental upgrade program of 11 million Euro installing new hybrid technology ﬁlters to reduce dust emissions at all three of its plants. The results have been extremely positive, since our dust emissions in 2008 reduced by 75% compared with 2007.
customer orientation, diversity, and as regards to the environment,
The cement making process necessarily entails the release of
environmental audits of facilities, quarry management and
carbon dioxide. Within the framework of Lafarge’s strategy for
rehabilitation and reduction of emissions.
ﬁghting climate change, we have been implementing actions in
Health and Safety is an absolute priority
three diﬀerent directions in order to reduce the contribution of our activity to this global problem: ﬁrst through the optimization
Health and Safety for the employees is a core value and top priority
of the production process, in order to minimise the energy
in all activities. Safe operation requires more than implementing
consumption per ton of product; then through the substitution
measures, procedures and standards. Taking a step forward, it
of fossil fuels by alternative fuels such as biomass that is carbon-
needs continuous eﬀort in order to foster and establish a shared
neutral; and ﬁnally, through the optimization of the cement
safety culture within the organization. The best companies in terms
recipes, maximising the use of cementitious materials that are low
of Health and Safety are the best performers in their sector. Our
in CO2 emissions.
vision is to be among the best companies in terms of safety through the visible and strong commitment of our leaders, the permanent
Being a good neighbour
development of our employees’ awareness and competencies, the
All over the world our local stakeholders have increasing
operational discipline and implementation of common standards
expectations about the way we operate our business. We are
and advisories and best practices and experience sharing.
engaged in improving our practices in local stakeholder relationship management. Besides training and action planning for improving
In 2006, Heracles employees signed the Lafarge Group Health
dialogue and setting-up a pro-active process for listening to and
and Safety policy, conﬁrming their personal and collective
informing stakeholders, all Heracles sites maintain their long-
commitment. In applying this policy, which tolerates zero accidents,
established practices for community engagement and partnerships
Heracles has taken measures relating to the necessary personal
for local development, delivering on the ground for them.
protective equipment, infrastructure works for a safe workplace, implementation of standards and procedures for every work performed as well as training and behavioral programs fostering and establishing a shared safety culture within the organization. The results of this collective eﬀort undertaken by all employees of
Pierre Deleplanque, Heracles Managing Director Heracles Managing Director, Pierre Deleplanque (born in 1964) graduate of Ecole Superieure de Commune de Grenoble started his career in Lafarge in 1989. He has held several management positions both centrally and as Chief Financial Oﬃcer in Lafarge`s operations in Venezuela and the Philippines. In January 2005, he was appointed CEO of the newly acquired Ecuador business unit where he successfully integrated the company into Lafarge and achieved major improvements in both safety and proﬁtability, while piloting a doubling of production capacity, which was commissioned in early 2009. His most recent position was that of Project Manager for the Orascom integration, supervising the process of Orascom business units entering Lafarge, as a result of the €10 Billion transaction announced in December 2007, for the leading cement player in the Middle East and Mediterranean Basin,. In October 2008, Pierre Deleplanque was appointed Managing Director of Heracles GCCo.
Energy Sector in Romania 2006 was a breakthrough year for the Green Energy sector in Romania
& SEE Europe
and the wider SEE Region, since scientists, investors; business and politi-
sector in Romania will be nothing
ers is thin nowadays at a global level.
cal leaders re-shaped the agenda and
but demanding and challenging. The
Energy sector faces a demographic
proposed solutions that would delay
geopolitical environment will continue
dip in experienced executives, right
the negative effects of climate change
to squeeze access, forcing the inter-
when the demands on energy leaders
and global warming scenarios. There
national oil companies into ever more
are rising dramatically. Energy compa-
is now a distinct change in direction
difﬁcult resource plays. Competition
nies must identify, from a diminished
towards Green Energy technologies by
will arise from unexpected sources.
pool of experienced candidates, future
both corporate and political leaders in
Technology will play an exponentially
executives who can do more. For these
Romania and the rest SEE Region.
greater role, and operating norms that
reasons building the executive talent
prevailed for the last 50 years will be
portfolio is a strategic imperative for
The most promising RES Development
all energy Romanian CEOs. You must
efforts in Romania will focus on wind,
Even the best rising executives must
steward executive talent with the same
biomass and hydro-electric power.
grow substantially to succeed in this
forethought and diligence you already
There are well-documented wind
demanding new arena. They must
apply to shaping your company’s asset
resources, including a large off-shore
be prepared to forge innovative new
portfolio. After all, even companies with
potential. There are also challenging
working relationships, rapidly lever-
superior assets will underperform if their
development opportunities for biomass
age the best emerging technologies and
top executives are ill-prepared for new
energy, utilizing the signiﬁcant existing
navigate through unprecedented risks.
marketplace realities and for increasing
capacity of over 4,000 MWth. The
In short, all companies – including
western region of Romania seems to
your company – will need a new breed
be the most promising for geothermal
of senior energy leaders in the Roma-
heat applications. There are also chal-
Athena Tavoulari Regional Manager SEE & Managing
lenging opportunities to develop small hydro-power projects, since over 2,600
When Stanton Chase is conducting CEO
MW of Romania’s electric capacity is
and C-level executive searches for its
generated from small hydro plants.
energy clients, we ﬁnd that the candidate
Director Bucharest – Stanton Chase International
pool is thin. Indeed, energy’s top-level It is now more than evident that all
talent challenge is compounded on the
major players are considering the
supply side of the equation as during
South-Eastern European countries as a
the ‘90s, when cheap prices prevailed,
new promising ground for investments
energy scaled back hiring and executive
in the renewable energy market. It is
development. As a result, the rising class
also clear that the future of the energy
of experienced senior energy lead-
Serbia, a land of
great Wind Potential
By Milos Petrovic, Principal Consultant, Stanton Chase Belgrade
here is considerable potential for the development of renewable energy sources (RES) in the countries of the Balkan region. Capitalizing on this potential could signiﬁcantly contribute to security of energy supply within the region and its wider neighborhood. After all, the European Commission has set a target of doubling the use of renewable energy to 12% of total consumption by 2010. Balanced energy mix and balanced technology options are the basis to meet the goals of the sustainability triangle: Competitiveness, environmental friendliness and security of energy supply. Energy is a key factor for ensuring sustainable development. At the same time, if the EU wants to meet its Lisbon objective to become the world most competitive economy, it needs reliable, aﬀordable and environmentally friendly energy supplies. Renewable energies can help diversify energy supply with little adverse environmental impact. They also tap naturally occurring energy ﬂows to produce electricity, heat and fuel. Such resources are often produced on a standalone use close to their point of consumption. These renewable sources are: Wind - harnessing the naturally occurring energy of the wind to generate electricity, both onshore and oﬀshore. PV projects in FP6 - using semi-conductor materials to capture the energy in sunlight and to convert it directly into electricity. Biomass - converting organic matter such as wood, plants and agricultural waste to provide heat, produce fuel and generate electricity. Concentrated Solar Power - concentrating the energy of the sun to generate electricity or provide heat. Ocean Energy Systems - exploiting energy from the ocean such as tidal currents and waves to generate electricity.
Geothermal - using steam and hot water generated by heat from the earth’s crust to produce electricity and provide heating. Hydropower - harnessing the energy available in ﬂowing water to generate electricity. The current conditions of the electricity market in Serbia allow for the prospect of both the importing and exporting of power. After careful analysis, the trading industry for Serbia is assessed at 10 TW (terawatts = billion kilowatts), with 70% for imports and 30% available for exports. The method for participating in the provision of this commodity is through a bid process conducted by the state owned utility Elektroprivreda Srbije, EPS. EPS will issue a public tender for the desired quantity of electricity to be purchased or sold, and licensed entities will then submit their proposals. This process is straightforward and precise. There are great regional diﬀerences in the availability of wind energy in Serbia and signiﬁcant diﬀerences are present even at small distances. The availability of wind energy in Serbia is greater in lower areas than in higher ones. The Northern part of Serbia is characterized by a strong local southeast wind – kosava. One region in Serbia – is Vojvodina AP, with almost two-thirds of its area having wind speed that exceeds 4 m/s. The Pannonian Plain, north of the Danube, covers approximately 2000 square kilometres and is suitable for the construction of wind generators because the basic infrastructure, from roads to the electricity grid, already exists. The prerequisite constant level of 5 m/s can be found in several locations: enjanin.
Stanton Chase Athens >> The Athens Ofﬁce of Stanton Chase International was awarded the First Prize for the Best Ofﬁce among the 70 ofﬁces of Stanton Chase International in 43 countries worldwide, during the global annual conference held in San Francisco. The performance of all ofﬁces is monitored throughout the year based on speciﬁc criteria and at the end of each year the winners are announced. This contest enhances competition among the ofﬁces, multiculturalism and highlights the best practices, which are the foundation of progress. A total grade of 9.05/10 –one of the highest ever- was given to the Greek Ofﬁce.
Stanton Chase News SC Athens announces new Executive Assessment Services >> Today, companies increasingly appreciate
Building on the experience and insights of our
the objective, insightful assessment of
industry sector Partners, we have developed
senior management at critical stages in their
our Executive Assessment Service to bring the
organization’s life cycle including:
highest precision and accuracy to executive assessment, based on a proven and consistent
Management Due Diligence
process. By assessing an organization’s
leadership talent, we determine how their
executives compare with the market’s available talent and measure internal capabilities and
Mergers and Acquisitions
Stanton Chase Bucharest >>
harder for a woman to fulﬁll her career
development, opportunities for career
goals? Are women in Romania and to
advancement and also rewards.
in cooperation with the Romanian HR
image impacting their careers? The
Club has recently organized an event
focus of the discussion was also on equal
focusing on the presentation of the results
rewards between men & women senior
of the Romanian Women in Management
executives in Romania, promising market
Survey that was implemented by our
sectors for career development for a
Hindering factors of women career
Bucharest oﬃce in November 2009. Well
woman, work – life balance, etc. The main
development still include gender & age
known HR Directors attended our event
conclusions of the Romanian Women in
biases. However, during our discussion,
and the participation of all guests during
Management survey included the facts
we identiﬁed some indicative female
our discussion was very encouraging and
leadership capabilities, such as
what extent hindered by the traditional image of their role in society and is this
Women in Management roles in Romania feel that they would need more time in order to be able to balance in the best possible way their obligations in private & personal life.
emotional intelligence, empathy and
interesting. Issues that were addressed included: why is that a great majority of
Women in Management roles in
ﬂexibility, impact & inﬂuence, decision
management positions in companies
Romania feel less competitive than
making, enthusiasm & team motivation
around the world are held by men? Is it
their male colleagues in terms of career
as well as assertiveness.
Stanton Chase announces >>
Auto, the largest car import company in the region. In the
that Milos Petrovic has recently undertaken the role of
meantime Milos has enhanced his vocational expertise
Principal Consultant of Stanton Chase Belgrade Ofﬁce
by attending all Mercedes and BMW seminars, as well
responsible for the Industrial and Consumer Products &
as Toyota trainings at Toyota Academy. Milos is the
Services Practice Groups. Milos Petrovic held managerial
President of the Car Importers Association in Serbia. He is
positions in the automotive industry for almost twenty
currently preparing his PhD at the Faculty of Mechanical
years. In the last few years Milos was CEO of Delta
Engineering at Belgrade University.
Stanton Chase announces >> that Athena Tavoulari has recently undertaken the role of the Managing Director of the Bucharest oﬃce of Stanton Chase, one of the most dynamic oﬃces of Stanton Chase in the South-East European region. Ms Tavoulari will also keep her role as the Regional Manager of SEE Region. After her appointment, she commented “I feel very proud and challenged to undertake also the Managing Director role of the Stanton Chase Bucharest oﬃce in combination to my regional role in the South-Eastern part of Europe. Romania is a land full of opportunities and challenges and I feel quite motivated to work in close collaboration with our talented Romanian team in order to expand and develop business for Stanton Chase Bucharest”.
A Last Word: Back from San Francisco >> By Nancy Mathioudaki, Partner – EMEA Consumer Practice Leader
I just came back from San Francisco
greenest museum on the planet, with a 2
where Stanton Chase held its 40th Global
½ acre Living Roof, an expansive solar
Annual Conference and had a chance to
canopy, an extensive water reclamation
visit CALIFORNIA ACADEMY OF
system, and walls insulated with recycled
SCIENCE MUSEUM, the largest Green
Museum in the world.
“If everyone adopted a western lifestyle, we could need 5 earths to support us“
The mission of the
It’s as if the Academy brings the whole
museum in our modern
universe under one roof - an aquarium,
era is to educate
a planetarium, a natural history
the public about the
museum and more! The 412,000 square
challenges currently facing
foot structure is not only physically
our planet’s environment.
impressive, but it just may be the
James Bruges, author of the “Little Earth” book
to Become Greener in Consumer Sector
hink about 1990s: Everybody knew that the Internet was coming … here we are 20 years later and the Internet is literally pervasive. I think “GREEN” will become as pervasive as the Internet is today. It will become a part of the way we live, the way we do business and how we function as a society. The impulse to go ‘green’ is spreading faster than morning glories and organizations of all types are launching green campaigns. In almost every opinion poll on the subject, customers say that are very concerned about climate change, and they connect the dots back to their own purchases. Consumers are no longer just shopping, they are voting for change.
The polls show that 87% of the customers worry about the environmental & social impact of the products they buy. However, no more of 33% of the customers say that they are ready to buy green products or have done that. To realize the green market’s true potential, businesses must help customers by removing the hurdles between intentions and actions. When customers reach the cash register, they often forget their eco – friendly attitudes. Private industry has enormous purchasing power and is easier to educate. Wal Mart for example has been eager to spread its environmental Know How as it works with its suppliers to trim packaging. To increase sales of environmentally sensible products, companies must also remove ﬁve ‘green’ product’s consumption barriers – lack of awareness, negative perceptions, distrust, high prices and low availability. In other words, companies have to move customers through every stage of the purchase
process – from being aware of eco-friendly products to ﬁnding them. A business that sells green products must see itself as an educator not a sales machine. Going green while staying competitive can be challenging and companies may rightly ask whether cultivating green customers is worth all the trouble. I believe that it is more than just worthwhile. It is the imperative for success. Once obstacles that now make it hard for customers to act in their environmental beliefs will be removed, sales will explode, companies will built a reputation for eco friendliness, more talented employees will be attracted, more inspired and loyal will the customers be and higher prices can be charged for these green products. Overall, companies refresh their brand, enhance their reputation and protect their market share from new green competitors. Carbon Labelling, can be discussed as a more advanced & speciﬁc practice of Retailers and Consumer companies (suppliers), for the achievement of major customers’ impact and their longevity in the marketplace. Carbon labels show consumers the “carbon content” of an individual product; its total amount of carbon dioxide emitted from every stage of its production and distribution, from source to store. By this, products try to
“If everyone adopted a western lifestyle, we could need 5 earths to support us“ James Bruges, author of the “Little Earth” book
build their green credentials and to this eﬀort companies and retailers are united. A good parallel here is calories. “Twenty years ago if you asked somebody what number of calories was high and what was low they would not have known. The same thing could happen here.” The portion of the population that is most interested in sustainability and the early adopters of sustainable products, are signiﬁcantly more likely to indicate that these logos have a high level of purchase impact and that a certiﬁcation / a seal mark indicating a product is environmentally friendly raises the likelihood that it will be bought. Thus, carbon labels could transform the behavior of companies and consumers. Carbon Reduction Label was oﬃcially launched last year (2008) in the UK with high street retailer Boots, Tesco, Walkers and Innocent Drinks agreeing to pilot the scheme and moreover the EU Commission under its eco-label plan, sets individual criteria for each product group before awarding the Community ﬂower label. Currently, over 3,000 products including detergents, paper and shoes have received the recognition. Food products will not only be assessed according to their production processes, but also a lifecycle approach, including the environmental impact of transport, the agreement states. I agree that the more regulations we have, actually the easier it will be to market green products to consumers. Tesco has already become the ﬁrst Carbon Trust pilot brand to let consumers compare the diﬀerent carbon footprints of similar products, such as washing detergents, by including the information on packaging. Giving customers comparable data will improve their understanding of carbon footprints, says the Carbon Trust’s Euan Murray. “This is the next revolution that needs to take place,” he says.
Nancy Mathioudaki Partner EMEA Consumer Practice Leader
Sowing the seeds of a competitive workforce By Yannis Nakopoulos
n the capital of Peloponnese, the small rural city of Tripolis, 200 scientists and specialized technicians working for HELIOSPHERA have great enthusiasm, hopes and targets. Indeed, HELIOSPHERA is the largest, most signiﬁcant and ambitious of four considerable Solar manufacturing investments that took place during the last 5 years in the otherwise rapidly declining Greek industrial sector. The company has attracted talent from Greece and abroad, as scientists and engineers who have worked in the semi-conductor industry or in leading R&D centers, now industrialize one of the latest and most eﬃcient photovoltaic technologies.
“As this is one of the very ﬁrst plants to produce the micromorph thin-ﬁlm technology worldwide, it enables Greek professionals not only to copy and execute, but to participate, create and own know-how at the absolute high end of the photovoltaic industry”, says Ilias Garidis, the company’s Chief Operating Oﬃcer. One should note that even the operator level jobs have very high requirements and can only be fulﬁlled after specialized education and training. Thus, besides the evident beneﬁts to the local community and national economy, what’s taking place in Tripolis right now cannot but help sow the seeds for a competitive workforce in today’s high requirement manufacturing reality and economy. The COO position of HELIOSPHERA oﬀered Ilias the opportunity to exercise to the maximum degree all operating lessons learnt in perhaps the most eﬃcient industry overall, the steel industry. “I used to say that the metal industry is more high-tech than any other and now, here I am, running a Plant featuring absolute state of the art automation, microelectronics and robotics technologies. I am lucky to be surrounded by truly competent colleagues, too, although the mixture of young, vibrant physicists, experienced volume production professionals and electronic, robotics or micromechanics engineers needs a fair amount of ﬁne feeling to steer to the most eﬃcient co-operation”.
Founded in 2008 by American and Greek investors experienced in renewable energy and poised to be established in the ﬁrst tier of thin ﬁlm producers, the company has already started its shipping ﬁrst 25,000 micromorph modules of 110Wp for a solar park of 2.77MWp near Saarbrücken in Germany, as well as to other customers around Europe, as it develops commercial activities mainly in international markets of interest such as Germany, France, Spain, and Italy, as well as the Middle East. Ilias has in the meantime realized that the race to the top will be much harder than initially anticipated. “Development in the photovoltaic industry is so rapid that we need to be ahead in order to keep pace. Losing a small step can make a big diﬀerence. We pursue the technological and scientiﬁc steps to continuously increase eﬃciency of the photovoltaic cell, while relentlessly working on the fabrication front to safely produce an ever higher number of unquestionable quality modules. A difﬁcult but exciting act, which requires the best out of all involved. Continuous improvement par excellence, commitment, much hard work and a great feeling seeing targets being achieved”. The production of Eﬃcient micromorph thinﬁlm modules started in November 2009 with an average module power of 110Wp. The modules are manufactured according to the highest quality standards in the new production plant, which includes a clean room of over 1500 m² and constant climate control. The micromorph production lines with a total capacity of 60 MW came from Oerlikon Solar in Switzerland. The plant can deliver more than 500,000 modules yearly. This high technology investment enjoys signiﬁcant R&D potential in cooperation with Greek universities and European technology institutions. After all, the long term sustainability of the company depends largely on the intensity, quality and results of the ongoing intensive R&D eﬀorts.
“Our roadmap is set to achieve 125Wp in less than twelve months and the ﬁrst milestones have already been reached or even exceeded as in the case of process stability, which exceeds 6σ standards”, sais Ilias. “Volume and eﬃciency increases drive costs down day by day, the plant having started operating on a 24x7 basis. A rigorous quality testing scheme ensures a tight adherence to the speciﬁcations of both process and product. The certiﬁcation of factory and product took place late October 2009 by TÜV Rheinland, the world leading institute in solar module manufacture, achieving the best result hitherto for comparable company. Except for developing the tandem micromorph cell, high level R&D work has already begun on even more eﬃcient triple junction”. Up to last year the photovoltaic industry has lived an Eldorado of high demand and high prices. This has changed; to be a credible environmental alternative, solar or any renewable energy must also achieve grid parity (i.e. same cost of generation to the conventional forms of energy generation), thus putting the weight on Operations to achieve higher module eﬃciency at lower production cost. “The micromorph thin-ﬁlm technology has the credentials to become the winning recipe in the solar industry. It combines higher yield than the conventional technologies in the real world of high temperatures, low light and shadows cast. With the integral electrical connection of the cells through layers of conductive Zn-oxides it exhibits exemplary reliability and then it is also really green containing nothing more exotic than nearly 100 times less silicon -pure mother earth- than conventional modules hence paying back the energy needed for its production in record time. The eﬃciency in the use of raw materials, the cost eﬀective production process and the beneﬁcial power generation characteristics allow this technology to oﬀer high IRR to the investor and make a decisive step towards grid parity”. One shouldn’t forget that this is a young technology, less than three years in the industrialization phase; and HELIOSPHERA is privileged to be actively taking part in one of the most exciting journeys in the photovoltaic module industry today.
Ilias studied Metallurgical Engineering in the National Technical University of Athens and acquired a Licentiate of Technology from the Helsinki University of Technology. He has over 20 years of experience in the international metals industry, having headed metallurgical plants, operations, engineering projects, logistics, quality and R&D functions. Prior to joining HelioSphera he managed large, capital intensive projects in S. Africa and the USA. He has worked within the leading metal industries in Greece and within the ArcelorMittal Group in Germany.
Face To Face …
with Konstantinos Lafkas
by Vana Mehleri, Associate Consultant, Industrial and Energy Practice Groups, Stanton Chase Athens Vana Mehleri: Can you outline SUNLIGHT’s main activities and justify its position as a leader in the energy sector? Konstantinos Lafkas: SYSTEMS SUNLIGHT S.A. is active in the design, production and distribution of industrial batteries and energy production systems. It covers the energy needs of sectors with particularly high demands, including Industry, Transportation, Telecommunications, Defense, Construction and Infrastructure. Our company ranks among the world’s top producers of energy products and systems in Greece as well as abroad due to its high end products, expert employees and strategic synergies. The industrial plant is situated in Northern Greece and regardless of the current deindustrialization tendencies and the global recession, we have chosen to support the local economy and operate as a hub for development. VM: Can you give me more details on your company’s product range and services? KL: SYSTEMS SUNLIGHT provides a wide range of specialized products and services. From industrial and consumer batteries to scalable renewable energy applications and power electronics, covering even the most demanding needs. One of the main areas of expertise is the Industrial Battery sector. The broad range of industrial batteries meets, in the most comprehensive way, the energy needs of users in every economy sector, through various applications. In addition, SUNLIGHT is a pioneer in defense application having been internationally renowned, since an important number of countries around the world have selected our company to equip their Navy. In the consumer battery sector, the company boasts its highly successful partnership with TOSHIBA, as its sole distributor in Europe. Our record sales have placed us at the top of TOSHIBA’s distributors. In line with contemporary international tendencies and energy saving policies, our company adapts its strategy and systemati-
cally invests in renewable energy sources, by using solar energy. VM: Besides the local market, is SUNLIGHT active abroad? KL: SYSTEMS SUNLIGHT S.A. is headquartered in Greece but also retains subsidiaries in Romania, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Poland, Serbia, France, Germany and Spain, as well as sales oﬃces in the Middle East. With associates in many European, African, Asian and American countries, the company has access to a distribution network that ensures the presence of its products in more than 100 countries in the world. Today, 70% of its turnover is in the area of exports. VM: Given the fast growth of the RES market in Greece, what is your position? KL: Companies and organizations are increasingly turning to Renewable Energy Sources (R.E.S.), recognizing the signiﬁcant beneﬁts oﬀered. Greece, due to its geographical location and temperate climate, with over 3,000 hours of sunshine per year, is an ideal country for strategically investing on solar energy. As a result, there is a notable turn to solutions that combine energy eﬃciency with environmental sustainability, using R.E.S. and, more particularly, Photovoltaic Systems. Photovoltaic Systems oﬀer considerable beneﬁts not only for the protection of the environment, but, also, for the preservation of energy sources. At the same time, they provide substantial Return on Investment and contribute to the viable operation of various organizations and companies. VM: How does your company assert its share in the Greek RES market? KL: SYSTEMS SUNLIGHT S.A. is considered a pioneer in R.E.S., especially in the design, development and installation of Photovoltaic Systems. Its activity in the R.E.S. ﬁeld began in 1998, when the company was commissioned to deliver small projects that involved
Autonomous Photovoltaic Systems. Since 2000, a privately owned grid-connected PV system (168kWp) is in operation in the island of Crete, while up to this day SUNLIGHT has implemented projects of various sizes (large-medium-small scale), diﬀerent technologies and level of diﬃculty, that amount to a total of 6MW. In addition, 240 hybrid Autonomous Photovoltaic Systems of approximately 2,55ΜW, have been installed in remote mobile telephony stations in Greece and in over ﬁfteen (15) countries abroad, like Albania, Romania, Serbia, Bulgaria, Uganda, Nigeria, Kenya, Congo and countries of the Middle East. In the 2nd half of 2010 it is expected that a total of 3MW grid-connected PV systems will be completed by SUNLIGHT in diverse locations such as parks, roofs, buildings etc. SYSTEMS SUNLIGHT S.A. reinforces sustainable development and promotes R.E.S. in Greece by turning solar energy into a safe and eﬃcient investment for its customers.
K. Lafkas Proﬁle Mr. Konstantinos Lafkas is the General Manager of SYSTEMS SUNLIGHT S.A. He started his career in 1994 as a sales engineer for SHELL GAS. He then moved to M.J. MAILLIS GROUP where he ﬁrst served as a country manager of the Bulgarian aﬃliate in Soﬁa. During the period 1996-2000 he travelled extensively in Eastern Europe developing the business either through establishing branches or through acquisitions. He has lived in Barcelona, Prague, Warsaw, Bucharest and Budapest. His next career step was BITROS S.A., where he worked as a sales and marketing director. In 2002, he joined the Natural Gas distribution Company in Attica. In 2004 he moved to ALFA LAVAL Greece, as a country manager for Greece and Cyprus. He has graduated from the National Technical University of Athens (Mechanical Engineering) and continued with post graduate studies in Business Administration (AUEB, IMD, INSEAD).
Afﬁliated Ofﬁces ATHENS BELGRADE BUCHAREST DUBAI SOFIA
Harris Pezoulas, President & Managing Director Milos Tucakovic, Managing Director Athena Tavoulari, Managing Director Panos Manolopoulos, Managing Director Darina Peneva, Managing Director
Regional Newsletter for Southeast Europe and Middle East
On Green Energy jobs - valuable research results quoted and executive experience shared. Including an overview on investments in Green Energ...