SolarWorld Quarterly Figures Confirm Reported Sales Increase - Group Maintains Growth14-05-09
In presenting its quarterly report SolarWorld AG confirms the figures its preliminary published. Group sales increased in the first quarter versus the same quarter of the previous year by 5.2 per cent to 176.3 (previous year: 167.5) million EUR. Earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) rose in the first quarter to 39.2 (previous year, operational: 39.1) million EUR. Group earnings went up from January to March by 26.5 per cent to 23.8 (previous year, operational: 18.8) million EUR. “With our complete added value creation from silicon to the quality module of the SolarWorld brand we have selected the right strategy”, says the Chairman and CEO Frank H. Asbeck. “In addition our cost structure allows us to essentially compensate for the price reduction that our competitors are struggling with and to actively accompany the solar power price on its way to grid parity.”
Looking at the balance sheet the SolarWorld Group gives a sound and strong impression in the first quarter. The equity ratio of 40.1 (31 December 2008: 39.7) per cent continued to be at a high level. Free liquidity amounted to 690.8 million EUR as per 31 March 2009. Endowed with this good capital base SolarWorld AG will continue to stick to its growth strategy in fiscal year 2009. On Monday, 18 May the group will celebrate the topping out ceremony of the new wafer production facility at the Freiberg location. With the start of production in early 2010 the capacity of the entire Freiberg wafer production will go up to 750 MW, from 2011 on to 1 GW. For this 350 million EUR will be invested in Saxony. The expansion of the US site of Hillboro is progressing according to plan, too. By the end of the year the new logistics and production building there will be ready for us to move into. At the same time the SolarWorld AG headcount has also continued to go up. At the cut-off date (31 March 2009) the group employed 2,518 persons worldwide. This is equivalent to an 8 per cent increase in the first three months of 2009. At the Freiberg site alone some 450 new jobs will be created in the future through the new wafer production facility.
In the first quarter the high awareness level of the SolarWorld brand has turned out to be an important competitive advantage. Above all in the core market of Germany sales in the trading segment could be significantly increased thanks to the support of the successful Germany-wide campaign under the motto of the solar “Dachsparkasse” (roof top savings bank). Frank H. Asbeck: “Our customers do not only buy a solar power system at the best possible price, but also more than 30 years of production experience, a 25-year performance warranty as well as the certainty that our modules will be recycled in an environmentally friendly manner.”
About SolarWorld AG
The SolarWorld AG group of companies (ISIN: DE0005108401) is a world leader in high quality solar power technology. The company is involved at all levels of the solar value chain and combines all activities of the solar industry from silicon as the raw material to turn-key solar power systems. SolarWorld AG is represented in all the world’s solar growth markets. The group is exclusively dedicated to its core business of photovoltaic power generation operating production facilities in Germany, USA and South Korea. They in turn supply the SolarWorld AG sales offices in Germany, Spain, USA, South Africa and Singapore. The central element of the business in addition to the sale of turn-key solar systems and solar modules to the trade is the distribution of solar silicon wafers to the international solar cell industry. Apart from grid-coupled (on-grid) products the SolarWorld Group also sells off-grid solar power solutions that make an important contribution to the sustainable economic development of threshold and developing countries. Under the name Solar2World the group has pooled its ethical commitment to solar power especially in developing countries.
SolarWorld AG employs 2,254 people worldwide. At the stock market the company is listed among others in the technology index TecDAX, in the ÖkoDAX, in the Dow Jones STOXX 600, in the international MSCI index as well as in the sustainability indices DAXglobal Alternative Energy and NAI.
SolarWorld Press contact
Contact Investor Relations: Phone: 0228/55920-470
Contact Press: Phone: 0228/55920-459