UMG solar cell manufacturer Calisolar buys 6N Silicon, raises $22.5M in additional funding

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Calisolar has bought 6N Silicon, in a stock-for-stock transaction between the two privately held companies. In addition to the acquisition, $22.5 million in funding was raised from existing Calisolar and 6N investors, according to the companies.

The new funds will be used to increase capacity at Calisolar’s Sunnyvale, CA, UMG-grade silicon photovoltaic cell manufacturing facility and expand silicon purification operations in Vaughan, ON, where 6N will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of the parent company.   

Calisolar says it will tightly integrate 6N’s innovative, low-cost, silicon purification techniques into its manufacturing process to deliver high-quality, high-performance solar cells.  By optimizing silicon for wafering and cell manufacturing, the company hopes to significantly lower manufacturing and energy costs, improve silicon yield, and enable scrap silicon recycling.

The move will strengthen CaliSolar’s position in the fast-growing U.S. and Ontario sectors, by allowing the company to meet domestic content requirements through its combined manufacturing capacity in both markets.

“This is a major step towards our mission to reduce the cost of solar,” said Roy Johnson, CEO of Calisolar. “With this acquisition of a world-class operation, talented people and new funding, Calisolar will rapidly grow in the U.S., Canada, and around the world.”

Calisolar began commercial shipments of solar cells in January on the heels of finding out at the end of 2009 that it was the recipient of a U.S. clean energy manufacturing investment tax credit of $51.6 million. The company says that the credit will help it speed up the completion of its 60MW manufacturing plant and increase its production capacity to more than 200MW in the coming year.

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