International Journal of Entrepreneurship (Print ISSN: 1099-9264; Online ISSN: 1939-4675)


A financial simulation of solar energy investment appraisal for McDonalds, south africa

Author(s): Sharanam Abbana, Ferina Marimuthu, Naresh Nunden

The sun is an infinite source of inexhaustible energy that has the most negligible impact on climate change. Several countries have been forced to study and create ecologically acceptable renewable energy solutions to meet the growing need for electrical energy while avoiding the adverse environmental repercussions and other concerns associated with fossil fuel combustion. The current electrical energy crisis in South Africa, alongside regular load-shedding situations, has been the impetus for this study. Despite a global drive towards renewable energy, South Africa still obtains more than 90% of its electrical energy from coal-fired power stations and currently, above-inflationary tariffs are expected to increase. Solar photovoltaic (PV) energy is one of the renewable energy sources accessible. This study aimed to financially simulate and appraise a solar energy investment for McDonald’s South Africa, an intensive fast-food restaurant electrical energy consumer, to determine the investment's viability. This study adopted an exploratory quantitative methodology consisting of solar panel simulations on a census of 125 free-standing McDonalds’ Drive-Thru restaurants located across South Africa. Secondary data was gathered from public domains comprising NREL solar PV watts calculator and the Treetops' solar system online commercial quotations. Subsequently, the financial data was inserted into the study's investment appraisal model comprising of various capital budgeting techniques, including the payback period, return on investment, and the internal rate of return. The financial simulation investment analysis results indicate that investing in solar energy is profitable for McDonalds South Africa in the longer run.

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