solopower funding: u.s. poised to hand over $197 million to another solar panel start-up
A small solar company called SoloPower will turn on the switch when it is produced in the United StatesS.
The factory on Thursday, an important step in allowing it to secure a $0. 197 billion government loan guarantee, which was obtained under the same controversial project that supported the failed panel maker Solyndra.
SoloPower has launched a strategy to distinguish it from the struggling commodity players in the solar panel industry.
Still, there are a few similarities between SoloPower and Solyndra
Became a lightning bolt in America. S.
After getting more than $0. 5 billion in government loans and then filing for bankruptcy, this year\'s presidential campaign.
Like Solyndra, SoloPower is the beginning of Silicon Valley
Use the same non
Traditional raw materials in solar panels.
Already non-existent peers, SoloPower is one of the only four companies in the United States. S.
Under the Energy Department\'s $35 billion plan, panel manufacturers will receive loan guarantees to support emerging clean energy technologies.
The Department of Energy will pay more than $56 to SoloPower.
5 million SoloPower collects loans, tax credits and rewards from Oregon and Portland, the location of its first plant.
Perhaps most importantly, at a time when the competition for cheaper solar products made in China is fierce, soloball is entering the market.
Although global demand for photovoltaic solar installations is expected to grow by about 8% this year, the rapid expansion of Asia\'s panel manufacturing industry in recent years --
In addition, government incentives in major European markets have fallen.
With plenty of solar panels left on the market, prices fell 30% this year alone.
Companies that make these panels are now struggling to survive.
Even the world\'s largest maker of solar panels, China Suntech Power Holdings Ltd. , warned on Friday that it could be delisted by the New York Stock Exchange due to its share price, reaching $90 in 2008, less than $1 now. Debt-
Heavy-pound Suntech said in July that its partners in the solar energy development fund may have cheated heavy Suntech with fake collateral pledges from hundreds of millions of German bonds.
These struggles have put tremendous political pressure on the industry.
Republicans, who intend to retake the White House in the November election, are using solindra and other US presidential candidates. S.
The Department of Energy has failed to brand the Obama administration\'s green incentives, a waste of public money and a source of cronyism.
For example, solingdra is backed by George Kaiser, Obama\'s main fundraiser.
With the accumulation of failures, Obama is under pressure to show better results for the project.
Earlier this month, Republicanscontrolled U. S.
The House has passed a \"No More Solyndras\" bill that will phase out the energy loan program.
It is highly unlikely to be occupied by the United States. S.
Signed by the Senate or Obama.
SoloPower said there was no basis for the comparison with Solyndra.
Ceo Tim Harris said in an interview that the light flexible solar panels of San Jose, California have unique advantages.
Harris said that they were facing commercial and industrial roofs that could not support traditional panels, saying that half of the world\'s buildings could not withstand heavy weight, rigid panels made of silicon.
This includes many buildings that store warehouses and big box retailers, Harris said.
In addition, he said that the price of the SoloPower panel is rising in an increasingly commoditized market.
\"Our demand is far more than our capacity and the price is very high,\" Harris said in an interview . \".
He declined to specify the premium that SoloPower was able to charge, but said his company\'s products were best suited to markets such as Japan, Italy and South Korea, with high electricity prices and good incentives for roof systems.
The company has been able to raise more than $0. 2 billion in venture capital from investors including cross-linked Capital, Hudson Clean Energy Partners, Convexa Capital Ventures and first-hand Capital Management.
John Cavalier said: \"Before the dollar of the DOE loan is relied on, it can be proved that this is a company that can absolutely produce products that can verify the demand,\" said the management partner of hudson\'s clean energy partner, the partner has invested in SoloPower.
\"I don\'t think anyone will question the wisdom of lending this nature to this company.
\"But some in the industry are skeptical about sorobauer\'s ability to succeed without lowering prices to compete with cheaper products in Asia.
\"They are flexible and light.
Is anyone willing to pay a premium for this?
I tend to refuse, \"said Matt Van Stein, a solar industry analyst at Lux Research, a Research and consulting firm specializing in emerging technologies.
\"They have to compete --to-
Go with the Chinese
\"The lighter but less efficient solopower must build and run its first line and meet other undisclosed milestones before it can begin to withdraw funds from the USS.
Ministry of Energy loan guarantee.
Harris expects this to happen later this year or early next year.
The funds secured by the loan will be used for the construction of the Portland plant in Oregon, which is expected to be completed by 2014.
Department of Energy spokesman Damien LaVera will not provide details of the loan guarantee terms for SoloPower and says the company\'s technology is not similar to that of Solyndra, but will not elaborate.
Once completed, the plant will produce 400 MW of solar panels per year, employing about 400 people.
There are currently 60 people working there.
Harris said that as soon as the first line is up and running and the panels are produced, SoloPower will be profitable.
At the same time, many solar companies have been losing money because they are taking the time to cut costs as product prices fall.
As far as Solyndra is concerned, in the absence of a profit, it has reduced its loan guarantee of $ 99% by 0. 535 billion.
Some project developers, bankers and others are wary of newer \"thin film\" solar technologies such as SoloPower, which are less efficient than traditional panels in converting solar energy into electricity.
Film, a broad term for solar panels that do not use silicon as raw materials, became the darling of investors five years ago when solar-
The price of grade silicon soared to $500 1 kg.
Film makers believe that, despite their lack of efficiency, they can offer solar energy that is cheaper than siliconreliant rivals.
However, today, the massive influx of Asian production capacity pushed the spot price of polysilicon to around $20 per kilogram, raising questions about whether there is a need to fund alternatives to silicon --based panels.
MJ Shiao, analyst at GTM Research solar, said: \"SoloPower must now deal with the industry\'s view that film is a technology that is dying out . \". \"A start-
The rise of film makers has upset many developers.
But Harriss of soloball has objected to the claim that his company has more orders.
\"There is a pipeline of projects that is about to begin waiting for this lightweight module.
\"We are the only option if you want to turn on the solar energy,\" he said . \".
\"It\'s impossible to build a factory today unless you have a unique product.
\"Cheap competitors like Solyndra, the panels of SoloPower use copper selengallium selenium-based gallium or CIGS as raw materials.
CIGS panels have long promised cheaper than polysilicon
Panel-based, while providing higher efficiency than other film technologies such as tellur cadmium, a raw material used in the USS.
Solar giant First Solar
However, the sharp decline in traditional panel prices over the past few years has made it impossible for CIGS manufacturers to deliver on this promise on a commercial scale.
Last year, CIGS solar company Helio Volt and Ascent solar Technologies Inc. sold shares to Korean enterprise Group SK Group and TFG radio Group respectively.
Another Miasole has already laid off staff and has publicly stated that he is looking for a partner.
Earlier this month, rival nano solar said its chief executive left office just eight months later.
While Solyndra was the most famous solar fault of last year, it was far from the only fault.
GTM Research estimates that the United States produced 281 MW of photovoltaic modules in the first half of 2012, compared with 561 MW in the first half of 2011.
That\'s one big reason why a range of US and European manufacturers are closing in the face of competition for increasingly cheap Chinese panels.
For example, the first solar company postponed the plan for the second US solar company indefinitely. S.
The factory is located in Arizona due to weak market. Start-
Ups was also hit.
Of the four companies that secured loans for photovoltaic solar manufacturing, two
Sorindra and a lot of solar energy.
Filed for bankruptcy.
Soroball and Lexington, Massachusetts-
Headquartered at 1366 technology, it received a loan guarantee of $0. 15 billion.
1366 funds have not been withdrawn from loan guarantees.
Even Chinese manufacturers, whose products are the cheapest in the world, are losing money and struggling with an expanding inventory.
LDK solar, one of China\'s largest solar companies, said earlier this month that it was seeking to raise cash and could sell strategic shares.
SoloPower hired Macquarie Capital to help it explore opportunities for cooperation.
Such a deal may include granting issue rights to European or Asian partners in exchange for shares in the company.
However, Mr. Harris said that Mr. Soro Bauer was not ready to sell.
In fact, the Knight of Hudson\'s clean energy partner said the company could even make an initial public offering next year.
\"If the capital market recovers next year, I think we will be able to articulate the value we offer to potential IPO investors,\" he said . \".