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The SMSL’s portfolio of solar power plants in operation was approximately 1.2GW as of February 28, 2018. Image: Canadian Solar

The SMSL’s portfolio of solar power plants in operation was approximately 1.2GW as of February 28, 2018. Image: Canadian Solar

‘Silicon Module Super League’ (SMSL) member Canadian Solar may not be expecting any shipment growth in 2018, yet significant revenue growth is expected from selling a major part of its US$1.5 billion PV power plant assets. 

The SMSL reported 2017 net revenue (previously lowered guidance on project sale delays) was US$3.39 billion, compared to US$2.85 billion in 2016. Net revenue from its total solutions business accounted for 22.8% of total net revenue, compared to only 8.1% in 2016.

The company was able to sell around 1.1GW of solar assets in 2017, while selling around 354MW of solar power assets in the fourth quarter of 2017 and completing and grid connecting around 360MW.

However, Canadian Solar guided net revenue in 2018 to be in the range of US$4.4 billion to US$4.6 billion, while module shipments would be relatively flat with 2017, which were guided to in the range of 6.6GW to 7.1GW, compared to record shipments of 6,828MW. 

The company was able to sell around 1.1GW of solar assets in 2017, while selling around 354MW of solar power assets in the fourth quarter of 2017 and completing and grid connecting around 360MW. Image: Canadian Solar

The company was able to sell around 1.1GW of solar assets in 2017, while selling around 354MW of solar power assets in the fourth quarter of 2017 and completing and grid connecting around 360MW. Image: Canadian Solar

The revenue gain is expected to come from selling PV power plant assets, which could account for approximately 45% of total revenue for 2018, according to the company. However, management also noted in its latest earnings call that PV module ASP’s were expected to trend lower from the second quarter of 2018, as polysilicon and wafer price declines permeate through to cells and modules. Greater project sales as a percentage of total revenue may therefore be required to meet revenue guidance, although this will be partially offset by lower manufacturing costs. 

Guidance given for the first quarter of 2018, indicates the shift in revenue generation with lower module shipments (1.3GW to 1.35GW) compared to 1.83GW shipped in the fourth quarter of 2017, while revenue is expected to be in the range of US$1.37 billion to US$1.4 billion . In the fourth quarter of 2017, Canadian Solar had revenue of US$1.11 billion.

The SMSL’s portfolio of solar power plants in operation was approximately 1.2GW as of February 28, 2018.

Tags: canadian solar, c-si manufacturing, pv modules, pv power plants, investment

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