Confirming that things are indeed on the up for the company, First Solar has released word that it is planning to double production capacity at its Frankfurt (Oder) manufacturing plant. Strong demand from the company’s European customer base has necessitated the expansion from 223MW to around 446MW by the fourth quarter of 2011. The company is in advanced talks with the German regional and federal authorities in regard to the proposal.
First Solar’s current (2010) anticipated annual production capacity is more than 1.3GW in Germany, the U.S. and Malaysia. With three additional factories in different phases of construction in France and Malaysia – and pending approval from the various authorities for this expansion in Germany – the company looks set to hit over 2.1GW of capacity, based on the annualized run rate for the first quarter of 2010.
News of the proposed expansion was welcomed by many, as it marks the first major foreign direct investment in the German green technology sector this year. The Frankfurt (Oder) factory recently received recognition by the Great Place to Work Institute.