SolarWorld AG invests in innovations13-08-12
• Shipments increased to 316 megawatts
• Successful project business thanks to Solarparc integration
• Group revenue dropped to € 340.1 million because of price dumping
• EBIT dropped to € -143.8 million due to impairments
Groupwide shipments of modules and kits grew to 316 (H1 2011: 269) megawatts in the first half of 2012. While the first quarter saw pull-forward effects in the German market, the largest volume of shipments was abroad in the second quarter. Shipments outside Germany accounted for 60.0 (H1 2011: 69.1) percent in the first half of 2012. Demand in Germany for kits for roof-mounted systems dropped noticeably in the second quarter for political reasons. An increase in sales abroad, particularly in Italy, was only partially able to offset this reluctance. The full integration of Solarparc AG in the SolarWorld Group paid off in the area of large-scale projects.
The drop in prices caused by price dumping is the main reason why group revenue decreased in the first half to € 340.1 (H1 2011: € 533.6) million. As a result of the drop in prices, impairments of € 33.5 million had to be made on our inventories. In addition, we had to make an impairment of € 80.8 million on advance payments. Neither impairment influenced the group’s cash position. These factors had a negative impact on the group’s earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT). In the first half of 2012, EBIT amounted to € -143.8 (H1 2011: € 70.5) million.
From today’s perspective, SolarWorld AG will not generate a positive EBIT in the 2012 fiscal year in light of the aggressive market situation characterized by illegal trade practices.
The financial result improved overall in the first half of 2012 to € -26.9 (H1 2011: € -31.3) million. In the first half of 2012, SolarWorld’s earnings totaled € -159.3 (H1 2011: € 22.2) million. As of the reporting date, liquid funds amounted to € 320.1 million, after SolarWorld bought back U.S. private placement senior notes totaling $ 175 million.
“We have to fight price dumping with technological innovations,” explained Dr.-Ing. E. h. Frank Asbeck, CEO of SolarWorld AG. The group will invest an additional € 50 million, primarily in new products specifically for highly efficient self-consumption of solar power as well as in bringing research results and patented innovations to German and American cell production. These new processes will improve the performance of solar modules while decreasing material consumption and thus production costs.
About SolarWorld AG: The SolarWorld AG Group (ISIN: DE0005108401) is a worldwide leader in offering brand-name, high quality, crystalline solar-power technology. Its strength is its fully integrated solar production. From silicon as the raw material through wafers, cells and modules all the way to turn-key solar systems of all sizes, the group combines all stages of the solar value chain. The central business activity is selling quality modules into the installation and distribution trades and crystalline wafers to the international solar cell industry. Group headquarters are located in Bonn, Germany, with sales sites in Singapore, South Africa, Spain, France as well as in the U.S. state of California. The group´s largest production facilities operate in Freiberg, Germany and Hillsboro in the U.S. state of Oregon. Sustainability is the basis of the group strategy. Under the name Solar2World, the group supports care projects using off-grid solar-power solutions in developing countries, exemplifying sustainable economic development. Worldwide, SolarWorld employs about 3,000 people. SolarWorld AG has been quoted on the stock exchange since 1999 and today is listed on, among others, the TecDAX and ÖkoDAX as well as in the sustainability index NAI.