Every journey begins with the first step. For Ralf Hofmann and a dozen engineers, one step was not enough. They wanted more. At the turn of the year 1998/1999, they left the KACO group to start a separate company that was solely dedicated to photovoltaics. They brought with them a lot of ingenuity and enthusiasm as well as decades of experience from KACO, which was already the world’s largest supplier of electromechanical choppers in the 1950s, the predecessors of today’s solar PV inverters. Now, KACO new energy is one of the world's largest manufacturers in the PV business. It is a Swabian success story!
1914 The factory was founded in Heilbronn by Gustav Bach, Albert Hirth and Gustav Klein. The company's purpose: the manufacture of engine gaskets.
1915 The company was registered in the Commercial Register as "Kupfer-Asbest Co., Gustav Bach".
1934 The electrotechnical range already included accessories for radios.
1939 Alongside engine gaskets and shaft seals, the product range focused on choppers, the predecessors of today’s inverters.
1948 Chopper and inverter production was expanded. The war-damaged factories were rebuilt and extensive improvements to the main plant in Heilbronn were undertaken.
1950 KACO was the world’s largest manufacturer of electromechanical choppers.
1953 The first thyristor inverter was manufactured by KACO.
1964 The use of transistors eliminated the need for choppers. The foresighted development of small relays guaranteed seamless continuation in electrical production. The emphasis moved to the production of electrical components, and in particular to relays, pin-and-socket connectors, printed circuit boards and inverters.
1978 Parts of the company were renamed KACO GmbH + Co. Heilbronn and BACH GmbH + Co. Heilbronn respectively.
1994 First developments in photovoltaics. The former BACH GmbH + Co. broke away from the KACO Group. Registered under the new name of KACO ELEKTROTECHNIK Bach GmbH + Co, the business was built on 30 years of experience in the field of relay technology. The "KACO" trademark represented impeccable quality standards, confirmed by certification according to DIN EN ISO 9001/2.
1998/99 Ten employees of the expanding "Gerätetechnik" profit centre separated from the KACO Elektrotechnik company and founded KACO Gerätetechnik GmbH based in Heilbronn. Ralf Hofmann took over management of the new company.
1999 KACO Gerätetechnik GmbH launched the first transformerless string inverter worldwide, the PVI 2600.
2003 The company moved to Neckarsulm.
2004 Opened the logistics and research and development centres in Erlenbach and Kassel.
2005 Branch office established in San Francisco, California (USA).
Powador xi series: improved and re-designed successors of the PVI series.
2006 The new production centre in Neckarsulm was completed; the company was the first manufacturer to produce its solar PV inverters in a CO2-neutral way. Expansion to Greece.
2007 The new research and development centre opened near Seoul in South Korea.
2008 A new logistics centre facilitated material flow and time management.
Powador XP100-HV: foundation of the extremely powerful XP central inverter series.
2009 Change of name: KACO Gerätetechnik GmbH became KACO new energy GmbH. The branch offices in China and Spain were opened.
Powador 02 series: the second generation of galvanically isolated string inverters.
2010 Subsidiaries in France and Italy were established.
Powador 10.0 TL3 - 39.0 TL3: true three-phase, medium-sized inverters for highest efficiency and flexibility.
2011 A scalable, 4 MW factory was constructed at the site in Neckarsulm. KACO new energy Canada was founded in London, Ontario.
2012 KACO new energy UK was opened.
Entering the utility-scale market: the Integrated Power Station (IPS) was chosen for the 400 MW "Alamo" projects in San Antonio, Texas (USA).
Powador-gridsave: the first all-in-one solar power storage system.
2013 Expansion into Japan, South Africa and the MENA region. Production started at the new facilities in San Antonio.
Flagship project Weinsberg: Development of a solution for the energy management of both electrical and thermal accumulators with the goal of maximizing self-consumption.
2014 Double jubilee: 100 years of KACO and 15 years of KACO new energy. Sales offices opened in Turkey and Australia and the US headquarters moved to San Antonio.
The blueplanet TL1 marked the launch of the new "blueplanet" solar PV inverter range; developed as a solution to all contemporary demands for PV systems such as energy storage and self-use.
2015 Certification to ISO 14001 standards for an exemplary environmental management system and re-certification to ISO 9001.
blueplanet 1000 TL3: the next generation of central inverters, and the basis for the IPS 2.0.
Ultraverter system: revolutionary inverter concept for the simple, safe, efficient construction of residential and small commercial PV systems world-wide.
2016 The branch in Jordan is established.
blueplanet 50.0 TL3 INT: a compact inverter for an optimised TCO in decentralised commercial and industrial solar power plants.
2017 blueplanet gridsave 1000 TL3: bi-directional battery inverter for utility-scale storage applications that are meant to support grid management.
KACO new energy positions itself for the future: as a manufacturer, consultant and solutions provider.