MEMC Electronic Materials expects to complete over 900MW of PV projects between the third quarter of 2013 and the second quarter of 2014 as it ramps its PV project pipeline and backlog.
The company reported that its PV project pipeline increased 98MW in the first quarter of 2013 to reach a total of 2.7GW. MEMC said that its PV project backlog, which only includes signed power purchase agreements or feed-in tariffs, increased to 925MW (dc) in the quarter.
Ahmad Chatila, chief executive of MEMC said: “Sales in our Solar Energy segment were soft due to a downward adjustment of our development spending rate last year. We expect the recent increase in construction activity to produce better results later this year.”
MEMC reported first quarter 2013 Solar Energy segment sales of US$201.5 million, down 58% quarter on quarter. The company recognised 45MW (dc) in non-GAAP revenue in the quarter, which included 41MW (27 projects) in direct sales and 4MW in sale-leaseback transactions. During the quarter, MEMC started construction of 104MW of projects, compared to 38MW in the previous quarter.
The lower sales were said to be due to fewer megawatts sold as well as a change in solar project mix that included EPC-only projects. The company also noted lower solar materials sales in the quarter. Revenue in the first quarter was boosted by US$25 million by the amendment of the supply contract with Tainergy, which also supported a decline in segment losses to US$18.7 million.
MEMC noted that total solar energy systems average project pricing in the quarter was between US$3.10/W and $3.40/W.
Management said in a conference call to discuss quarterly results that the ramp in projects would pick-up significantly in the second half of the year and were on track to complete approximately 500MW of projects in 2013, up slightly (10MW) from previous guidance for the year. However, momentum would continue into the first-half of 2014 and beyond, unlike recent years when projects declined in the first quarter of each year.
The company reported total GAAP revenue of US$443.6 million.