With Our Footprint And Resources In Cambodia, We Aim To Expand Our Business There As Part Of The Company Growth Strategy In The South East Asian Portfolio: Rassa Herabat – Head of Asset Management and RE Project Manager, Prime Road Power

Rassa Herabat- Head of Asset Management and RE Project Manager, Prime Road Power

SolarQuarter ASEAN magazine had an interesting conversation with Rassa Herabat – Head of Asset Management and RE Project Manager, Prime Road Power and gained an understanding of the company’s services, major utility-scale projects, and their offerings in Cambodia. He also told us about how smarter technology is making its way into the solar sector.


What first got you interested in solar power? Could you brief us about your products offerings & services?

My first interest in renewable energy, as well as its applications & ecosystems, was previously back when I had an opportunity to join the annual energy summit in Thailand in 2016 where I was impressed by Tony Seba, an author of “Clean Disruption of Energy and Transportation”. 


After that, I decided to further study renewable energy and truly believe that it will be one of the key disruptive drivers towards the future energy sector and carbon-neutral SDG goals.


Currently, I work at PrimeRoadPower, a regional RE developer and energy-driven ESG solution partner visioning “Innovating green technology for all to transform the world for a sustainable future”.  

Apart from being an active RE developer with a footprint in Thailand, Cambodia, Japan, and Taiwan, we offer carbon-neutral ecosystems including solar rooftop EPC turn-key services, Battery Storage, Trading, customized Energy Management systems (EMS) as well as other solutions to support our partner towards clean energy and carbon neutral.

Please brief our readers about the major utility-scale projects that you have undertaken in Thailand.

We are one of the first movers in the solar farm business in Thailand obtaining the first batch of PPA with an Adder scheme of aggregated 91.7MW installed capacity solar farms (11 solar farms) operating in the North and NE region which is currently in partnership with VENA Energy Thailand.

Structured under Prime Road Group., Ltd., we have developed 40.6 MW installed capacity agricultural cooperative solar farms (8 solar farms) and continuously acquired new solar projects to grow our operation portfolio in Thailand.   

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What are some of the major drivers driving the growth of the solar sector in the region? 

I believe COP26, carbon-neutral policy, and global warming awareness will continue to be key drivers for renewable energy development in the region & globally. The policies will be cascaded into action plans by multi-layer drivers i.e. country commitment of carbon-neutral through government policies for example carbon tax, sector-level commitment via international company’s global ESG policy best practice, additional benefits in green energy development spaces to developers and investors towards ESG thematic (carbon credit, green carbon financing).

In some SE Asia and other emerging markets, the demand for energy consumption is expected to recover exceeded the pre-COVID-19 level. A series of government policies, i.e. PDP, plays a crucial role to accelerate the transformation of traditional fossil to renewable energy, meaning solar and other RE will grow together with maturity of the energy decentralization framework and EV development & penetration in each country.  

Tell us about how better and smarter technology is making its way into the South East Asian solar industry?

Every aspect to derive a lower LCOE on renewable energy with ESS on every sizing & scale will be a critical factor to drive this sector forward.  We have no doubt on solar LCOE that could beat conventional projects but question the firmness of its resource. The renewable with ESS will instead offer a firm supply but however, contribute to much higher LCOE that might not attract investors or developers if no subsidies are offered or strong policy is driven from governments.  

For utility-scale projects, lowering LCOE would be included price and higher performance of key equipment i.e. PV module, inverter, and battery, technical design optimization with safety requirements i.e. rapid shutdown, aggressive & creative warranty offered from key equipment suppliers, or even innovative green financing options. 

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Apart from the LCOE factor, there is huge potential for residential and small-to-medium scale solar projects from clean disruptive energy and transportation decentralization i.e. P2P trading, EV, and battery penetration but it definitely requires government policy-driven in each country.  

Even though there are a significant amount of land plots being under-utilized in South East Asia, I do expect a development trend of the solar industry in South East Asia will be more focused on double cropping scheme i.e. agriculture PV, rooftop, and floating given of land utilization awareness and transmission cost & loss factor.  

Please tell us about our esteemed company Prime Road Power solar offerings in Cambodia.

In Cambodia, we have established 2019 our entity named Prime Road Alternative (Cambodia) Co., Ltd to invest in 60 MW solar power in Cambodia National Solar Park in Kampong Chhange Province. 

The project is structured by ADB as a public-private partnership to develop a solar park in Cambodia involving the Southeast Asia Department (SERD), the Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department, the Office of Public-Private Partnership, and the Private Sector Operations Department (PSOD). Prime Road Alternative (Cambodia) Company Limited was awarded the project through a competitive reverse auction tender process that resulted in the lowest utility-scale solar tariff in Southeast Asia at the time.  

The project will contribute to Prime Road Power, Electricite du Cambodge (EDC), and ADB’s climate change mitigation efforts by reducing annual greenhouse gas emissions in the energy sector by 110,700 tons per year. Classified effective gender mainstreaming and sustainability, the project will also promote gender equality and women’s empowerment in Cambodia as well as build up local job activities and bring expertise to local communities. 

With our footprint and resources in Cambodia, we aim to expand our business there as part of the company growth strategy in the South East Asian portfolio.

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Please tell us about the best practices being followed by your company for the same for asset management.

The asset management goal is to best enhance Return on Investment (ROI) and Return on Asset (ROA) for the company and stakeholders.  

In order to achieve that, the Asset Management team works to drive a continuous improvement of operational metrics and financial position, top to the bottom line as well as being deeply understanding a state of the art of stakeholder management of the operating portfolio.

AM’s responsibilities cover the deployment of innovation and technologies to improve operating performance, management of operational contracts, compliance and stakeholder relationship, OPEX optimization, and unlock value for the company & SPV’s tangible & intangible assets.

With a regional portfolio to be managed, local partner selection in a structural way with a clear commitment specified and materialized in legal form is a critical success factor. In addition, a bigger portfolio and a higher number of projects & operational countries, a smarter way of working i.e. innovative monitoring tools, smart O&M initiatives will also need to be taken into account.

In order to be successful in an asset management role, the person should have a variety of skill sets with a mixture of both hard (technical, accounting & finance and legal) and soft skills (stakeholder management & negotiation & critical and systematic thinking) and innovative mindset.

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