Panasonic to Head to Europe With Battery Storage After Australia

Panasonic Corp. plans to bring its energy-storage systems to Europe, and is focusing on Germany, after signing partnerships to offer the battery technology to Australian homes that have solar panels.

“We will launch a similar product in Europe in the not-too-distant future,” Paul Reid, managing director of Panasonic’s Australian unit, said Tuesday in an interview. “Germany would be the next logical step.”

Panasonic is targeting 10 billion yen ($80 million) of home-focused energy storage sales a year outside Japan by fiscal 2018. The move follows last month’s announcement from Tesla Motors Inc. that it will sell a suite of batteries to store electricity for homes, businesses and utilities.

Panasonic plans to begin selling the systems in Australia in October after carrying out a study with ActewAGL, Snowy Hydro Ltd.’s Red Energy and Ergon Energy. It’s the first time the company is offering residential storage outside Japan.

The technology will allow homes to store excess electricity for later use, reducing peak power consumption and energy costs, according to Panasonic. The pilot projects will start in solar households in the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales and Queensland, the company said Tuesday.

Talks with additional power companies in Australia will continue, he said. “There are plenty of other parts of Australia where we haven’t yet started that trial process so we’re more than happy to discuss our technology with others.”

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