solarwindow

SolarWindow: A Unique But Risky Opportunity

by Debra Fiakas, CFA SolarWindow (WNDW:  OTC/QB) raised $25 million this week to build a manufacturing plant for its electricity-generating glass.   Three investors subscribed to 16.7 million shares of common stock.  The company is getting $19.8 million in new capital in addition to conversion of $3.6 million in debt to common stock. The SolarWindow is unlike any other energy producing innovation.  Rather than relying some sort of dedicated production plant or facility, the SolarWindow is a part of the electricity user’s own facility.  Ultra-thin layers of liquid coatings are sprayed onto a glass surface, forming a network or array of miniature solar cells. This is a type of photovoltaic technology that uses...
PV pricing trends

How China Came To Dominate Solar Manufacturing

by Paula Mints The PV industry is global, and its pricing function has a cultural basis. Particularly as it is dominated by China, without an understanding of China and its market motivations, it is impossible to understand why PV manufacturers today, all rational actors, willingly accept 15% or lower manufacturing margins when margins for like industries are higher. Examples from other industries include: Coal 40% to 50%, Iron and Steel 20%, Construction ~30%, Appliances 30%, Aluminum 20%, Industrial Machinery and Components 40%, Aerospace 40% and Agriculture 8%. In the PV industry the average margin is 8%. Congratulations PV, you are on par with agriculture. Aside from significant government...
Round-up of announced solar manufacturing capacity for the US

US Solar Manufacturing Announcements: The Real And The Hype

by Paula Mints In 2018, the US market for PV deployment is estimated at ~12-GWp. As the US does not have sufficient domestic cell manufacturing capacity to meet its demand, most of the 12-GWp will be met by imports of cells or, modules. Following the implementation of cell/module tariffs there were, as expected, new capacity announcements in the US, primarily for module assembly. If all the current announcements came true it would add an additional 4.2-GWp of module assembly and 1.7-GWp of cell manufacturing (thin film and crystalline) capacity to the US. First Solar (FSLR) is responsible for 1.3-GWp of the new module assembly and...
Suncommon groundbreaking

Suncommon breaks ground on a new Community Solar project in the Hudson Valley

  On 10/17/18, a groundbreaking event was held for a community solar installation being developed by SunCommon, partnering with Orange County Citizens Foundation, to supply a group of 60 homes and a community center located in the hillsides of an exurb called Sugar Loaf near Chester, NY. The staff and community members were ebullient, as the project, coming to the end of 2-year development process, begins the final stage of erecting the racks and panels, and installing the interconnection, which will be completed in the next 30 days. It is the first project for SunCommon, a firm with a large footprint...
SunPower Equinox using IBC panels

Sunpower’s Tariff Exemption: When You Win, You Lose

SunPower gets an exemption for its interdigitated back contact (IBC) solar cells – did it win the battle and lose the war? by Paula Mints If SunPower (SPWR) was playing a game of chicken with the Trump Administration to give it an edge towards the goal of getting an exemption, it a) won its gamble and can now focus on manufacturing p-type monocrystalline cells and modules to compliment imports of its n-type IBC cells and modules, b) won its gamble and now must keep its word and invest in resuscitating the long-in-the-tooth SolarWorld US manufacturing facility, or, c) won its gamble...
ReneSola SOL logo

ReneSola Finds Shareholders Hard To Please

Solar project developer ReneSola Ltd. (SOL:  NYSE) reported financial results this week for the quarter ending June 2018.  Revenue topped $27.8 million in the quarter well below the year ago period when a faster pace of development activity generated $44.8 million in sales.  The negative year-over-year comparison was anticipated following the sale of ReneSola’s solar cell manufacturing operations in September 2017.  Now the company is making its way with solar project development, engineering services and electricity sales from its owned solar power facilities. Management had guided for sales in a range of $25 to $30 million in the June 2018 quarter.  The good news was that ReneSola...

First Solar: Companies Plan, God Laughs

by Paula Mints First Solar (FSLR) offered a great lesson about the announcing of plans (man plans, god laughs) in July when during its Q2 release call it discussed the yield problems slowing commercial production of it’s Series 6 large format module. The production delays are due to a single point of failure causing a bottleneck. First Solar expects to enter volume production with its Series 6 module early in 2019. Muted-kudos to First Solar for discussing a not-so-secret problem with Series 6 production. The kudos are muted because if the company had been more circumspect in the first place there...
Enphase M-Score

Hopping Off The Short Enphase Bandwagon

by Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA Last week, I wrote that I'd taken a short position in Enphase Energy Inc. (ENPH). I have now closed out that position and don't intend to go short again. My decision to go short was based on four factors: I'm worried about risk in the overall market, and so am considering opportunistic short positions as a hedge. Prescience Point Capital Management released a report accusing Enphase of earnings manipulation. The report seemed well-researched from a purely accounting point of view. My favored indicator for avoiding companies which might be engaging in earnings manipulation, Beneish M-Score was...
solar micro inverter

Hopping On The Short Enphase Bandwagon

On July 25th,  Prescience Point Capital Management recently released a report accusing Enphase energy Inc. (ENPH) of earnings manipulation. Prescience is an investment manager with a reputation for strong short-side analysis. I was intrigued, and decided to investigate Prescience's claims for two reasons: I am generally concerned about overall market conditions, so adding a short position to my portfolio is attractive in the current market environment. As an analyst who specializes in clean energy stocks, I have suspected that Enphase would not survive much longer because I believe that its core technology is no longer the best solution for...
solar micro inverter

Suniva, SunPower, Enphase, SolarBridge and SolarWorld – Six Degrees of Solar Separation

by Paula Mints In June, Suniva crawled out of its badly managed grave courtesy of a request to the U.S. Bankruptcy court made by its partner-in-tariff-petition, SQN Capital Management, which had sought relief for itself and Suniva’s other creditors. A public auction will be held sometime between June and August for, what was described as, some of Suniva’s manufacturing equipment. Meanwhile, back on planet hope-springs-eternal, investment is being sought to restart manufacturing with whatever equipment remains. Lucky SQN now owns Suniva’s monocrystalline cell manufacturing capability, its module assembly capability and its licenses. Comment: Concerning the upcoming auction … if you’ve got...
solar manufactureing

The US Solar Module Capacity Bandwagon

by Paula Mints South Korea's Hanwha Q Cells (HQCL) jumped on the US solar module capacity building bandwagon by announcing that it planned to add 1.6-GWp of module assembly in the US with the goal of taking advantage of the 2.5-GWp of cells that can be imported without the tariff. Comment: The US has about 1-GWp of module assembly for which cells must be imported. Jinko is expected to add 600-MWp of module assembly capacity in Florida. SunPower (SPWR) is expected to add capacity in Oregon if and when (when or if) the SolarWorld US acquisition is approved. Meanwhile new module assembly is...

Unprofitable Tesla Begins Dismantling Unprofitable SolarCity

by Paula Mints In June, Tesla (TSLA) announced it would shut down some of its solar installation stores, end its agreement to sell solar systems through Home Depot and either lay off or reassign affected workers. Tesla indicated that this was part of its overall plan, that is, business as usual. Comment: In 2016, Elon Musk, oops, Tesla adopted, oops, acquired, SolarCity from his cousins, oops, SolarCity shareholders for $2.6-million, oops, $2.6 billion, ramming the deal down skeptical shareholder’s throats, oops, making an economically rational case for the deal. A shareholder lawsuit is working its way through the courts. SolarCity, the pioneer...
Weather Risk Managment: Solar Put

How Weather Risk Transfer Can Help Wind & Solar Development

by Daryl Roberts The Need To Accelerate Renewables Adoption Renewables are growing rapidly as a percentage of new electric generation, but are still being assimilated too slowly and still constitute too small of a fraction of total generation, to be able to transition quickly enough to scale into a low carbon economy in time to mitigate climate change. The issue of providing public support, with subsidies and other reallocation methods, is a politically charged subject. High carbon advocates, for example American Petroleum Institute, argues that support for renewables distorts the market. On the other hand, it has been argued, for example by...
residential solar

List of Residential Solar Stocks

Residential solar stocks are publicly traded companies that develop, install, finance, or own solar systems for single and multi-family residences. See also the list of Solar Farm Owner and Developer Stocks, the list of Solar Manufacturing Stocks, and the list of solar and wind inverter stocks.   Guggenheim Global Solar ETF (TAN) RGS Energy (RGSE) Solar Alliance Energy, Inc (SOLR.V) Sunrun, Inc. (RUN) Sunworks, Inc. (SUNW) Tesla, Inc. (TSLA) Vivint Solar (VSLR) If you know of any residential solar stock that is not listed here and should be, please let us know by leaving a comment. Also for stocks in the list that you think should be removed.
Solar Farm

List of Solar Farm Owner and Developer Stocks

Solar farm owner and developer stocks are publicly traded companies who develop or manufacture equipment that converts sunlight into other types of useful energy.  Includes manufacturers and developers of both solar photovoltaic and solar thermal equipment, as well as their supply chain. See also the list of Solar Manufacturing Stocks, the list of Residential Solar Stocks (forthcoming 6/21/18), and solar and wind inverter stocks. 7C Solarparken AG (HRPK.DE) Abengoa SA (ABG.MC, ABGOY, ABGOF) Acciona, S.A. (ANA.MC, ACXIF) Algonquin Power and Utilities (AQN, AQN.TO) Atlantica Yield PLC (AY) Bluefield Solar Income Fund (BSIF.L) Boralex (BLX.TO, BRLXF) Brookfield Renewable Energy Partners (BEP) Canadian Solar (CSIQ) Capital Stage AG (CAP.DE) Edisun Power Europe AG (ESUN.SW) Etrion...
solar manufactureing

List of Solar Manufacturing Stocks

Solar manufacturing stocks are publicly traded companies who develop or manufacture equipment that converts sunlight into other types of useful energy.  Includes manufacturers and developers of both solar photovoltaic and solar thermal equipment, as well as their supply chain. See also the list of Solar Farm Owner and Developer Stocks, the list of Residential Solar Stocks (forthcoming 6/21), and solar and wind inverter stocks. 5N Plus Inc (VNP.TO, FPLSF) Amtech Systems Inc (ASYS) Apollo Solar Energy (ASOE) Ascent Solar Technologies Inc (ASTI) Canadian Solar (CSIQ) DAQO New Energy Corp. (DQ) First Solar Inc (FSLR) GCL-Poly Energy Holdings Ltd. (3800.HK) Guggenheim Global Solar ETF (TAN) Hanwha Q CELLS Co., Ltd. (HQCL) Iberdrola, S.A....