Archive for October, 2013

Solar Industry Stats

In spite of all the negative industry news 2012 saw a 76% growth in U.S. PV installations over 2011. The largest growth came from the solar utility market. The U.S. and Europe continue to lead the world in PV growth. This level of growth, however, is not expected to continue as utility procurement has slowed. Many of the larger utility municipalities have met or are expected to meet their Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) obligations. Chinese imports have caused PV prices to fall dramatically due to generally inferior quality products offered at lower costs than domestic counterparts. Market over-saturation by U.S. PV producers, along with cheap Chinese imports, led many U.S. and European companies to declare bankruptcy and close operations.

Our next post will discuss how these stats may affect current and future values for solar cell and module manufacturing equipment.

A Primer on Pumps (Pun intended)

Pumps and motors come in all sorts of sizes, horsepower and output ratings. Depending on the application, they can cost anywhere from $50 to $500,000 or more – quite a range wouldn’t you say. We have recently been involved in the valuation of various pumps and motors that are part of irrigation and flood control land in California’s Central Valley. We encountered several different types of pumps at this site including deep well and lift. Deep well pumps draw water from the ground while lift pumps typically transfer water from one point to another, such as levees, canals or ponds. Pumps that run a lower RPM’s tend to be less common, but they often have longer useful lives than their faster RPM counterparts. Lift pumps often fall into the slower RPM category and will usually command good interest and resale values in the secondary market.

Next up – solar cell and module manufacturing equipment, prospects for the industry and its equipment…

What Do Nut Processing Machinery, Water Pumps and Machine Tools Have in Common?

A funny question you may ask but we have a logical answer – they are all long-lived equipment with generally active secondary markets and historically strong resale values. We have been recently working on appraisal assignments in these areas for a variety of clients. As we research each of these equipment markets we learn even more than we thought we already knew.

As example, did you know that California alone produces more than 70% of the world’s almond supply. Domestic consumption is fairly stable but markets in the Middle East and Asia prize the quality of California’s nuts and demand from these regions is growing each year. While domestic consumption remains relatively flat, the industry itself is robust, especially with the demand from overseas markets. Well-maintained equipment used to process, sort and package nut products should have good demand for some time to come.

Our next blog post will discuss some interesting and lesser know factors influencing values on pumps and motors.

On-line Auction Technology Evolving Fast

Our auction hosting platform provider, NextLot, has added some outstanding features to the on-line bidding experience. In addition to improving the interface and ease of use for their auctioneer clients (like us), they offer some innovative features for our bidders. A virtual ringman, virtual bidding room and smart phone access will provide a seamless way to follow any auction that we are conducting, from anywhere and at any time. Stay tuned as we launch these exciting features in upcoming sales. Of course we will want your feedback too on these new features so that we can continue to improve what is important and effective to our clients.