Technology news - Solar Purge Drives Weakest Into Buyouts, to Spur More Deals
Results 1 to 1 of 1
  1. #1
    SuperMod
    appus's Avatar
    Member InfoShowcaseActivity StatusThanks / Tagging Info
    join date|Join Date
    Jan 2011
    location|Location
    abode of appus is unknown to all
    post count|Posts
    4,377
    reputation|Rep Power
    135
    flag|Country: Users Flag!

    Technology news - Solar Purge Drives Weakest Into Buyouts, to Spur More Deals

    August 30, 2011, 8:12 AM EDT By Ehren Goossens and Andrew Herndon

    (Updates with comment from analyst in final paragraph.)

    Aug. 30 (Bloomberg) -- The solar-equipment industry is beginning a consolidation that’s already the biggest in at least two years as plunging prices for photovoltaic systems force weaker companies to team with competitors or close shop.

    Mergers and acquisitions announced so far this year total $3.3 billion, up 33 percent from the $2.47 billion in all of last year, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Evergreen Solar Inc. of the U.S. today set a Sept. 20 meeting for its creditors after seeking bankruptcy protection this month. German solar-panel maker Q-Cells SE in July said it’s open to takeover bids.

    Tumbling solar-cell prices are provoking deals. Their 42 percent drop in 2011, stemming from tougher Chinese competition and declining solar-energy incentives in Europe, contributed to California’s Sunpower Corp. and Roth & Rau AG of Germany agreeing to takeovers. Ascent Solar Inc. took a Chinese partner.

    “Weaker companies who did not get their product costs down to competitive levels are going to disappear,” said Christopher Blansett, an analyst for JP Morgan Securities LLC. “They’ll be bought up. They’ll go away. There is significantly more supply of solar modules than demand.”

    A sell-off in solar stocks has made acquisitions cheaper. The Bloomberg Industries Global Large Solar Index dropped 36 percent this year through yesterday, compared with a 3.8 percent decline in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index in that period.

    The pace of acquisitions is the fastest since 2009, when $6 billion were recorded. The biggest deals that year involved GCL- Poly Energy Holdings Ltd., the Chinese maker of polysilicon. That’s the raw material used in solar cells, which are combined into modules, or panels, that convert sunlight into power.

    ‘Ripe for Consolidation’

    “The industry is ripe for consolidation,” Michael Schostak, director of business development and communications at Auburn Hills, Michigan-based Energy Conversion Devices Inc., a maker of thin-film solar laminates, said in an interview.

    Adam Krop, an analyst at Ardour Capital Partners in New York, put Energy Conversion on his list of vulnerable companies. Aaron Chew, an analyst at New York-based Maxim Group LLC, named Daystar Technologies Inc. and Q-Cells.

    Energy Conversion and Daystar Technologies are U.S. manufacturers that have both lost more than 80 percent of their market value this year through yesterday. Energy Conversion had 112 days of inventory in the second quarter, the most of any company in Bloomberg Global Leaders Solar index, according data compiled by Bloomberg.

    Up for Auction

    Evergreen said it plans to sell itself at an auction. Hopewell Junction, New York-based cell maker SpectraWatt Inc. this month also filed for protection from creditors.

    Q-Cells, once the world’s largest maker of solar cells, hired investment bank and bankruptcy adviser Houlihan Lokey to look at financing options, it said last week.

    “It’s totally feasible that Q-Cells goes under,” Chew of the Maxim Group said in an interview. The company’s shares reached a record low Aug. 10 after forecasting a “three-digit million-euro” loss for the year.

    Q-Cells spokeswoman Ina von Spies said the company is “well-positioned” to compete. She said it has an established brand, an innovative portfolio of solar cells and modules, technological know-how and a strategy to “continuously drive down costs,” in e-mailed comments yesterday. Q-Cells “has already led talks with potential partners, which haven’t resulted in an agreement.”

    Other German solar companies are struggling. Solon SE said on Aug. 16 that it will cut 15 percent of its jobs after inventory rose 45 percent in the first quarter to 160 million euros ($230 million) from a year earlier.

    ‘Commodity’ Producers Vulnerable

    Roth & Rau, the German maker of solar-cell manufacturing equipment, agreed in April to a takeover by Swiss competitor Meyer Burger Technology AG, after first-quarter inventory more than tripled to 97 million euros.

    Schostak of Energy Conversion said the most likely takeover targets offer commodity crystalline silicon products and that his company is talking to potential partners about integrating its flexible cells into products from roofing tiles to backpacks. He didn’t name the companies.

    Daystar Technologies, a Milpitas, California-based maker of thin-film solar cells, is “in discussions” with potential investors to “provide financing, manufacturing capabilities or other opportunities,” Chief Financial Officer Chris Lail said in an interview.

    “U.S. solar manufacturing consists of legacy laggards” and innovators that have “stuff so new that it’s not even on the shelves,” Chew said. “The question is, will the shakeout result in consolidation or closures?”

    The survivors likely will be companies with proprietary designs that improve efficiency, while those that focus on low- cost manufacturing strategies may be less appealing to potential buyers and investors, Krop said in an interview.

    --With assistance from Christopher Martin in New York, Stefan Nicola in Berlin and Ben Sills in Madrid. Editors: Will Wade, Todd White

    To contact the reporters on this story: Ehren Goossens in New York at egoossens1@bloomberg.net; Andrew Herndon in San Francisco at aherndon2@bloomberg.net

    To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net





    Powered By WizardRSS.com | Full Text RSS Feed | Amazon Plugin | Settlement Statement | WordPress Tutorials
    ANY HELP NEEDED -- MESSAGE ME

    Hidden Content

    Hidden Content


  2. # 1a
    India
    Technology news - Solar Purge Drives Weakest Into Buyouts, to Spur More Deals

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Advertising world
    Posts
    192
     

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Technology news - Yelp Cuts Back on Daily Deals
    By appus in forum Technology News, Updates & Reviews
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 30th August 2011, 07:25
  2. Technology news - Hynix Profit Drops as Demand Slump Drives Down Chip Prices
    By appus in forum Technology News, Updates & Reviews
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 21st July 2011, 06:52
  3. Technology news - Hynix Profit Drops as Demand Slump Drives Down Chip Prices
    By appus in forum Technology News, Updates & Reviews
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 21st July 2011, 03:37
  4. Applied Materials' Varian Purchase May Spur Chip-Equipment Deals
    By appus in forum Technology News, Updates & Reviews
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 5th May 2011, 19:50
  5. Applied Materials' Varian Purchase May Spur Chip-Equipment Deals
    By appus in forum Technology News, Updates & Reviews
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 5th May 2011, 08:00

User Tag List

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •