Leading PV manufacturing equipment supplier Meyer Burger has reported preliminary first half year financial results, highlighting strong sales and a return to profitability but weak order intake, due to Chinese government solar policy changes at the beginning of June.
Meyer Burger expects to report sales of CHF 232 million (US$231.5 million) for the first half of 2018, up 9% from CHF 212.3 million in the prior year period.
Meyer Burger expects to achieve a profit in the range of CHF 7 – 8 million at the net earnings level, compared to a net loss of CHF 17.0 million in the first half of 2017. EBITDA is expected to increase to around CHF 28 million, compared with CHF 6.9 million in the first half of 2017.
The only dampener was incoming orders in the first half of the year being around CHF 138 million (US$137.7 million, compared to CHF 308.5 million in the prior year period.
According to Meyer Burger a “momentary strong reluctance regarding new investments on behalf of Meyer Burger’s PV customers” in China was to blame for the new order intake decline, due to caps placed on downstream PV project installations that have exceeded targets two years in row and were responsible for the market overheating and upstream overcapacity.
PV Tech recently highlighted that PV manufacturing capacity expansion announcements in the first quarter of 2018 had totalled 24,879MW, including module assembly capacity expansion plans of 15,570MW, the second highest on record since 2014.
China accounted for 14,240MW of new announcements in Q1 2018, or 61% of the total, while accounting for over 71,000MW in 2017, or 73% of the combined total of capacity expansion announcements.