SunPower downgrades FY21 guidance as supply chain woes bite commercial, legacy business units

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The Blue Raven Solar acquisition will enhance SunPower’s presence in 14 US states. Image: SunPower.

US solar installer SunPower has downgraded its full year 2021 revenue guidance, pointing to delays in its commercial and industrial projects business.

The installer yesterday (3 November 2021) confirmed a Q3 revenue and earnings missed, first revealed last month, with revenues of US$323.6 million and earnings of US$17.5 million, falling short of the previously-issued revenue and earnings bottom-ends of US$325 million and US$21 million respectively.

However the company’s residential arm continues to grow, with residential bookings up 36% year-on-year to 108MW from 14,200 new customers in the quarter, cementing SunPower’s strategy to double down on the US residential PV market.  

Presenting its Q3 2021 results, SunPower said its full year revenue and earnings guidance for the year, including the CIS and Legacy business units it recently said it was considering the future of, is now below the prior guidance of US$1.41 – 1.49 billion and US$110 – 130 million figures previously given, respectively.

SunPower said this was down to project schedule delays affecting its CIS business, which is impacting both revenue and adjusted earnings from the unit, while revenues from SunPower’s Light Commercial division are also now expected to be lower than previously forecast.

In guidance for the fourth quarter, SunPower said it expected revenue excluding the CIS and Legacy business units to be in the range of US$330 – 380 million, with adjusted earnings falling in the range of US$28 – 46 million. CIS and Legacy business revenue for Q4 is forecast for a range of US$31 – 41 million, however the divisions are expected to incur a loss of between US$5-10 million as a result of supply chain impacts.

As a result, total net income guidance for Q4 2021 has been given a range of US$5-10 million.

While SunPower reported growth in its residential business, its total installations slipped sequentially from 125MW reported in Q2 2021 to 121MW in Q3. Adjusted earnings for the quarter also fell 21.2% sequentially to US$17.5 million, however this was more than double the US$8.6 million recorded in the corresponding period last year.

Peter Faricy, chief executive of SunPower, said the results were validation of the company’s decision to increase its focus on the US residential solar market and pointed to an increasingly favourable environment for solar, buoyed by recent policy initiatives in the country.

“The time is now for homeowners to adopt solar energy and storage, with flexible financing options and favorable clean energy incentives currently under consideration by Congress that make it easier for consumers to help fight against the increasing impact of climate change. Along with our recent acquisition of Blue Raven Solar and new leadership hires, there is a bright future for the next phase of SunPower,” Faricy said.

As a result, SunPower has reiterated its residential business guidance of 345 – 375MW installed from 55,000 – 60,000 new customers and a >US$0.70/w gross margin run rate.

Furthermore, the company has also reiterated the FY 2022 earnings guidance given last month when the business announced the Blue Raven acquisition.

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