Pricing Adjustments for VeraSol Certification Services
June 1, 2023
Due to increased demand, rising prices, and greater product complexity, VeraSol is adjusting pricing for our certification services.
VeraSol certification is a widely used framework that underpins many market development and government activities in the off-grid solar sector. There are more than 26 financing and development programs using VeraSol certification as part of their program eligibility requirements, resulting in more than $196 million of investment available to companies with VeraSol-certified products. Over 18 governments have adopted quality standards for solar energy kits and are using VeraSol certification for import control and conformity assessment. These initiatives are driving increased demand for VeraSol certification.
For VeraSol to respond to the increased demand for certification, while continuing to deliver essential services to the sector, the VeraSol team carefully reviewed our current pricing structure and made the decision to adjust pricing for certification services.
Effective August 1, 2023, we will increase most of the prices in our fee schedule by approximately 50%. All new service orders for product certifications placed on or after that date will be governed by the new pricing structure. The table below provides a side-by-side comparison of the old and new prices. Note that the certification fees paid to VeraSol are distinct from the cost of product testing at accredited laboratories. The certification fee increase noted here will not affect the cost of laboratory testing. A few highlights related to certification fees:
- We will continue to waive the base fee for new customers submitting their first product for certification.
- The invoicing and sampling fee are unchanged.
- The fees for the Initial Screening Method (ISM) report review and evaluation are unchanged.
Pricing for VeraSol Certification Services
Effective August 1, 2023
Important note: Product testing costs are not included in these fees and must be paid directly to the accredited test laboratory that conducts the tests.
In parallel, we are taking other important steps to keep the costs of product testing and certification as low as possible. These steps include:
- Revising the current IEC test methods and quality standards to reduce testing complexity, with the goal of reducing the costs of product testing and certification while maintaining a rigorous evaluation process (see Proposed Changes to IEC TS 62257-9-5 and IEC TS 62257-9-8).
- Launching the Master Service Agreement to reduce the administrative burden for companies and improve the efficiency of the certification process.
- Continuing to offer the COVID-six-month extension policy for eligible products through July 2023.
- Continuing to offer certification for multiple kits with minimal testing through the framework for testing product component families.
- Continuing to offer co-branding as a low-cost pathway to obtain certification.
- Assessing additional options for streamlining administrative processes.
The key factors driving VeraSol’s pricing adjustment decisions are below.
- More complex products result in higher certification costs. More than 60% of the products listed on the VeraSol product database are solar home system kits and product families. As the size and complexity of the systems we certify increase, the resources required to develop test plans and review test reports also increase.
- Price adjustments were delayed to mitigate supply chain challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The off-grid solar sector has been severely impacted by the supply chain disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the global economic downturn in recent years. To help companies cope with these complex challenges, we delayed the price adjustments as long as we could.
- Improve financial sustainability of product certification. VeraSol certification costs are highly subsidized by donor funding. To strengthen the resilience of our services, we need to reduce our operational costs, decrease dependency on donor funding, and shift a larger share of certification costs to industry.
VeraSol may incrementally increase prices again. We will communicate any changes as far in advance as possible, and strive to give companies sufficient time to plan for resource allocation associated with certification.
We look forward to our continued partnership with suppliers of quality off-grid solar products. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.