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Xiaoping Wu, Chairman of Cybrid Technology: "Paste paste" to create the world's first PV backsheet

  • Categories:企业文化
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  • Time of issue:2020-06-15 10:00
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(Summary description)"Our business, in a nutshell, is really 'pounding glue,' just like 3M. 3M is the largest 'pounding glue' company in the world, and last year 'pounding' 's more than $230 billion." Wu Xiaoping uses a jocular analogy to explain what exactly he does with Cybrid Technology, which he founded.

Xiaoping Wu, Chairman of Cybrid Technology: "Paste paste" to create the world's first PV backsheet

(Summary description)"Our business, in a nutshell, is really 'pounding glue,' just like 3M. 3M is the largest 'pounding glue' company in the world, and last year 'pounding' 's more than $230 billion." Wu Xiaoping uses a jocular analogy to explain what exactly he does with Cybrid Technology, which he founded.

  • Categories:企业文化
  • Author:
  • Origin:
  • Time of issue:2020-06-15 10:00
  • Views:


"Our business, in a nutshell, is really 'pounding glue,' just like 3M. 3M is the largest 'pounding glue' company in the world, and last year 'pounding' 's more than $230 billion." Wu Xiaoping uses a jocular analogy to explain what exactly he does with Cybrid Technology, which he founded.

Eleven years ago, he set up Cybrid in Wujiang, Suzhou, and in 11 years, this little-known company has gradually become a global leader in photovoltaic backsheets, and has also successfully entered a number of fields originally monopolized by overseas technologies, such as electric vehicles, smart power module cooling materials for inverter air conditioners, and OLED materials, and has become a supplier for big-name companies like Ningde Times, BYD, and Gree.

This year, with the company's successful landing on the A-share market, Wu Xiaoping is expanding his "glue-punching" business.

The term "glue-punching" is, of course, a joke. To put it more strictly, "Cybrid is a polymer materials company in the form of a thin film with adhesives at its core" - it buys the film and chemicals, and then produces its own glue to coat the film, which becomes the final product.

Among them, the formula of the glue can be said to be a secret, China in many key material field by overseas "stuck" can be attributed to this.

Cybrid seems to have mastered these mysterious formulas.

But Wu Xiaoping still has one small goal left to achieve........

Origins of the Global Champion

On the shores of Lake Taihu in Suzhou is the famous Tongli Ancient Town, on the eastern side of which lies the Tongjin Avenue.

It is slightly surprising that the entrance to this global leader in a niche industry only uses a small Plexiglas panel as the company's nameplate, and the so-called gate is just a row of short walls.

Equally low-key is Wu Xiaoping's office. At first glance, this is not so much an office of the chairman of a listed company, but more like a training classroom: the entire room is white walls on all sides, except for a few pots of greenery and no other decoration, the middle of a common long table is the place for senior meetings, a "Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lenovo College Lecturer" bronze medal leaning against the wall corner.

When I saw the reporters, Wu Xiaoping got up to welcome them. I saw his face red, forehead wide chin broad, although the sideburns have been white, but groomed in a neat and tidy manner.

"After the photovoltaic cells now enter the large size era, our main product kpf backplane will obviously benefit, because the power is high, the heat resistance requirements of the backplane is higher, only kpf backplane can adapt." Wu Xiaoping gets straight to the point by describing one of the most successful "recipes" of Cybrid to date.

Usually, PV backsheets consist of a PET film in the middle and two laminates on top and bottom, which are glued together. In the past, some backsheet manufacturers had replaced the expensive inner laminate with a thermoplastic olefin film to save costs, which in Wu's view was a design mistake because the film was not heat resistant or UV resistant.

Cybrid then became the first in the world to make a new fluorine-based film that could be cured to 220 degrees Celsius and did not require glue to bond. In contrast, olefin films are heat resistant to only 90 to 100 degrees Celsius.

"We turned into a global champion with this original technology, original brand and original product," Wu said.

Today, KPf has become the standard for a new generation of backsheets, with a share of 30 percent of the global market, and will rise further in the future.

Despite the strong position of the backsheet boss, a double-glass component that doesn't require a backsheet has emerged in the industry in recent years. Foreseeing this trend as early as 2014, Cybrid has been working on it ever since and has included it in its medium- and long-term R&D plans. It was the first in the world to invent the cross-linked POE, which went on to drive the entire industry standard.

"That's why in just two years we've achieved the second largest global market share for POE films. Now, the company is also actively planning for POE expansion." Wu Xiaoping expects that this business can also achieve substantial growth, if you consider the possibility of further acceleration and expansion of technological innovation and production capacity, gross and net profit margins can achieve a node breakthrough.

In the field of heterojunction cell components that represent the future technical direction of photovoltaic, the company has also stocked a black technology material, which is being tried on the test line of the first-line module factory. Wu Xiaoping revealed that the performance of the technology is constantly improving, gross margin is also relatively high. The company will also be a beneficiary once the heterojunction technology becomes widespread in the future.

"This black technology was commissioned four years ago by Mayer Bouger of Switzerland, the world leader in heterojunction cell assembly processes and equipment, and is one of the medium- and long-term research and development projects that Cybrid developed five years ago to build long-term advantage," Wu said.

GREE's autonomous nobility

Moreover, Cybrid is the first company in the world that has invented and delivered repair materials for backsheets, and has repair materials for the entire PV system, and is currently submitting international patents one after another.

In the past, many module manufacturers used cheap backsheets, silicone, junction boxes, etc. in order to save costs. Today, these organic materials are leaking or even cracking, creating a huge repair market.

Another market with huge potential is the market for lightweight components. In Wu's view, this is a virgin territory of up to 30 gigawatts in volume. There are countless corrugated steel plate factories around the world, and even ordinary roofs in India, Africa and Southeast Asia use corrugated steel plates.

The so-called lightweight, in fact, is to give up glass, and instead use a special film that can withstand hailstorms and absorb shock energy to make module panels, with a special encapsulated adhesive film and backplane, the cost of which is slightly higher than ordinary modules.

"We're going to turn it into a high-margin business for a specific market segment because it's already virgin territory and there's no competition. But we're not going to sell materials and we're not going to go after the market with customers," Wu said.

In addition to photovoltaics, the polymer materials developed by Cybrid can be used in IGBT inverters. Among them, the high-power applications are mainly in the field of inverter modules for electric vehicles. The application in the low-power aspect is mainly in inverter air conditioners. As we all know, Gree started out with inverter air conditioners, but a large number of core components are still purchased from abroad.

"China is all in the key materials, invisible places, by others to pinch the dead. Later, we built a production line for Gree to help the company get a core component." At this point, Wu Xiaoping is proud.

This key core component is the intelligent power module component, whose surface must be able to both export current and quickly dissipate heat, which is achieved mainly by the adhesive in the middle - both insulating and conducting heat.

Today, GREE air conditioners have become increasingly autonomous, a significance that is clearly greater than the photovoltaic backsheet.

The secret of continuous growth

"The secret of our business in this industry is to rely on a wide variety of products, a typical concentric circle strategy - there is only one technology platform, but applications can expand infinitely," Wu said.

This is the key to the fact that the polymer materials developed by Cybrid can be used from PV backsheets all the way to inverter air conditioners, lithium-ion power batteries and even OLEDs.

"Our company is young but sedimentary, as our startup team are all old men in their 50s and 60s, and a few Japanese, who used to work for famous chemical companies and know how many brushes with overseas companies they have," Wu said.

He revealed that from the beginning, Cybrid has done two things: one is to gradually enrich the technology platform with intention and strategy. "This platform is very important. The core of competition in business is the competition of speed, and with a platform you can react quickly, and when you generate demand and then look for technology it's too late. Therefore, we are always ready. That's what a technology platform is all about."

"Second, it makes a very good Portfolio, or investment portfolio." Two-thirds of the company's R&D is directed at non-PV businesses, and a solid PV business can provide cash flow support for that, Wu said. With its funding and technology platform, the company invests 70% of its resources in medium-term projects, which are the stars of the future - such as automotive materials and OLED materials - and which will provide another big cash flow in two years' time.

In addition, the company also invests 30% of its R&D in long-term projects, "which often take five years, like our lightweight components and Gree's smart power module cooling materials, which were all invested in R&D five years ago."

"This is the top of what we call the 'short, medium and long-term plan'," Wu said, "the growth of the company is like this: the existing business can't be thrown away, at worst it has to be flat. Add new businesses on top of that, but each business has a climb, which is the natural law of the life cycle of any product, business or market. Eventually, the first business may drop down, but the second one gets back up, and when the second one is almost down, the third one gets back up, thus creating a continuous growth curve. Whether it's doing product portfolio design or building a medium- to long-term plan, the ultimate goal is to plan ahead and proactively follow my own vision for sustainable growth."

In his view, the operations of a truly sustainable growth company must be strategic, not reflexive. Cybrid's leadership at every point is the result of medium- and long-term planning and technology platforms - this is called "proactive continuous growth".

According to him, the company's investment in research and development accounts for 3%, every year 60-70 million yuan, and there are more than 80 R & D personnel now, to be increased to 100 by the end of the year.

"I gave an order not to allow simple copying, otherwise people will be lazy and unwilling to think. If a company just copy and follow, it will result in a culture that is just following culture." Wu Xiaoping said, "'Originality' is the foundation of this company Cybrid."

In the interview, Wu Xiaoping repeatedly referred to the world-class giant 3M, "In our industry, the pursuit of business model is not all to look for large products like backplane, the global scale of the backplane market may be 6 billion, which is considered large in our coating industry, but 3M's sales a year is 230 billion yuan, may be more than that. "

He revealed that there are 70,000 kinds of 3M products on sale, each variety of average sales of about 350 million yuan. The similar company in Japan, where he used to work, also had sales of nearly 60 billion yuan, with more than 20,000 kinds of products on sale, and average sales of about 4 million yuan for each product.

"My own mission to achieve 10 billion before I retire, otherwise I think the scale is too small compared to the company I used to work for," Wu Xiaoping said with a smile.

To build China's 3M - this may be Wu Xiaoping never declared but long buried inside the small goal. For him, the fact that China is the world's second-largest economy without a company like 3M means that there is a lot of opportunity, and the venture that started 11 years ago is a small step towards that goal.

Although the gap with the overseas giants is still large, he is not in a hurry, "After all, people 3M has been doing it for 100 years, we are still only 11 years." He said with a final smile.

Article transferred from: Shanghai Securities News

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