Ra’ed (Rod) Arab is the Founder, President and CEO of both Quadra Power and Quadra Solar. Quadra Power is the Presenting Partner of Solar Canada Conference & Exposition 2017.
We recently spoke to Rod about what makes his company an ideal sponsor for the event, what he thinks the main growth drivers for the future will be, and what he sees as the biggest changes for the Canadian solar power industry in 2018 and beyond.
Quadra Power is the Presenting Partner at Solar Canada. Tell us a little bit about your company and its position in the Canadian solar energy industry?
Quadra Power brings an experienced construction management team, with over 200 MW of direct solar power construction projects, together with the business, finance and engineering experience of its sister company Quadra Solar Corporation, which was established in 2007.
Our team‘s core competence evolved with the PV Industry and since 2007 has been active in the development of both small and large scale installations across Ontario, Canada. We are also pursuing opportunities worldwide.
Quadra Power retains a strong procurement and supply chain partner expertise. We have excellent relationships with leading clean technology manufacturers, enabling us to realize the many aspects of energy efficiency across a spectrum of technologies. Together with our partners, we have a strong track record of completed projects.
We pride ourselves on being a “self-performing company”, meaning that we provide all services, end to end, from sales and construction, to maintenance and warranty work. We don’t sub-contract electrical work or construction activities, which separates us from a lot of other companies. We have access to skilled labour through our partnerships, which allows us to scale when demand is high. However, the core management remains within the company and we know this business inside and out.
We’re a rapidly growing company with the construction experience of more than 200 MW of ground-mount, utility-scale construction projects. Our forte is ground-mount projects, from to 500 kW to 10 MW plus. That being said, we are a small company, focused on our clients, with lower overhead costs, which makes us extremely efficient.
This year, Solar Canada has introduced a new stream to the event: “Residential, Commercial, and Industrial”. I understand that you’ve recently expanded the scope of your business, from a focus on utility-scale projects, to include residential, commercial, and industrial projects. Can you tell us a bit more about that?
Yes, you’re right, and it seemed like this would be a great year for us to step in as the Presenting Partner for Solar Canada Conference & Exposition 2017.
As I mentioned, our forte is ground-mount projects, typically 10 MW and bigger. We are currently developing projects in both Alberta and Ontario, and have started doing work outside of Canada. I’m going to be in Indonesia the week before the event, getting home just in time to attend the show.
In the past year, we have entered the commercial and residential markets. We find that our clients are very pleased to know that we bring the same large project management discipline and experience — like the civil works that we completed on the 100 MW project in Kingston — to their commercial and residential projects. There are many opportunities in the commercial and residential markets that we can address, given the breadth and depth of our experience.
What do you think are the main growth drivers for the Canadian solar power industry?
In Ontario, one of the biggest growth drivers, hopefully, will be clear regulations. For me, one of the most important developments that can help our industry is for the federal and provincial governments to have a clear strategy and regulations for carbon credits. In most parts of the United States, carbon credits are well defined and well understood. In Canada, it is not yet determined in most markets.
What is going to be the biggest change to the solar power industry in 2018 and beyond?
I think that storage is going to be a big thing in the future. Costs are coming down dramatically, which will allow people to produce their own electricity, store it, then sell it back during peak hours. This is going to result in a big change for the industry, for consumers, and for governments. However, this needs to be supported with regulations that encourage ‘tiered net metering’. Regulations can improve the financial model and make it more appealing to the average end user.
I think that this can have a particularly important impact in northern and remote areas, where the cost to build and operate micro-grids is expensive. Regulations can lower these costs, which can result in energy independence and lower costs for residents, decreased greenhouse gas emissions, and less reliance on the transportation of fossil fuels, like diesel, for home heating and electricity needs in these communities.
If people want to speak with you more during the event, where can they find you?
A number of people from the Quadra Power team will be attending the event. You can find us in booth 615. We’re interested in speaking to as many different people as possible, learning about their upcoming project requirements, and discussing their ideas on the future of our industry.
We are very excited about sponsoring, and attending, this year’s event.
Ra’ed Arab is Founder, President & CEO of both Quadra Solar Corporation and Quadra Power Inc. Quadra Solar, founded in 2007, develops systems for both the utility scale and distributed solar power generation markets. Quadra Power, founded in 2016, specializes in Renewable Energy Development projects, providing engineering, procurement, construction, operation, and maintenance services. Mr. Arab has a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from Carleton University (in Ottawa), specializing in Computer Systems.
The Canadian solar energy market is growing rapidly
Solar Canada Conference & Exposition 2017 will provide an excellent platform to connect with industry professionals and enter this growing market. Solar Canada takes place December 4 – 5, 2017 in Toronto, Ontario. Canada’s largest solar energy conference is a must-attend event for solar energy professionals, stakeholders, and advocates. Register today.