Ascent Solar shakes things up with a new CEO and a new focus on emerging and specialty markets

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Ascent Solar Technologies will be changing up its work strategy with a new CEO who will lead the company in the pursuit of a new market focus. Farhad Moghadam will be stepping down from Ascent Solar for the pursuit of other interests and opportunities with his position as CEO and president being filled by Ron Eller. Eller has been a board member at Ascent Solar for the past two years and has a 25-year background in technology executive management. He is credited with spearheading various divisions of Hewlett Packard and Compaq Computer. 

Eller’s new role will see him take the company and its thin-film solar module technology to the emerging and specialty markets. Ascent has been primarily known for its establishment in the buildings applied and building integrated PV markets (BAPV and BIPV), but with its change in focus, plans to target specialty markets such as military and defense, custom near-space applications, off-grid charging solutions in developing countries, power for portable electronics and custom and standard products for rooftop integration on buses, trucks and trains. Ascent acknowledges that its new focus not only calls for Eller as the new executive lead, but also makes sizing the company to a new cost structure necessary.

“We want to assure shareholders, customers and partners that Ascent's various BIPV/BAPV products are still important to our long-term growth and success. Consequently, we will continue selective business development, testing and certification for those products. A number of economic considerations, including the serious reduction of government subsidies in major markets in Europe, indicate that these markets will be under some near term pressure,” said company Chairman, Dr. Amit Kumar. “Therefore, in the near term, we will focus our manufacturing and sales activities on emerging, high-value, specialty market applications. Although our cash position is strong, we are taking steps to reduce staffing and operating costs that will minimize the company's current cash burn rate and help to ensure our continued leadership in flexible thin-film solar technologies.”

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