WACKER and SCHOTT team on multicrystalline silicon wafer production

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WACKER CHEMIE AG and SCHOTT Solar have announced plans to jointly
invest €370 million through 2012 in expanding multicrystalline silicon
wafer production at facilities in Jena and Alzenau, Germany for solar
cell production that is planned to generate one gigawatt/year by 2012. 
The joint venture would become one of the world´s five largest
solar-wafer manufacturers, according to the companies. 

“WACKER is the world’s second-largest supplier of hyperpure
polycrystalline silicon and a pioneer in the manufacture of solar-grade
polysilicon,” stated Dr. Peter-Alexander Wacker, Wacker Chemie AG´s
President and CEO. “Our forward integration – with a strong partner –
into solar-wafer production is vital to our strategy of creating
corporate value in this growth sector. The recently announced
expansions of our polysilicon production capacity to more than 22,000
metric tons per year ensure the joint venture´s starting material
supply.”

“Given polysilicon´s actual global scarcity, a reliable
supply of this raw material is essential to SCHOTT Solar´s ambitious
growth targets in the photovoltaic sector,” stated Prof. Udo Ungeheuer,
President and CEO of SCHOTT.  “Combined with our current capacity
expansions for solar cells and modules in Alzenau and Valasské Mezirící
in the Czech Republic, the joint venture will play a decisive role in
strengthening SCHOTT Solar´s position as one of the world´s leading
manufacturers of solar-energy components.”

WACKER and SCHOTT
each will hold a 50 percent equity stake in the production joint
venture SCHOTT WACKER Solar GmbH, while in the sales joint venture
WACKER will hold 51 percent and SCHOTT 49 percent.


The
production joint venture includes SCHOTT’s existing facilities in
Alzenau for producing solar wafers and those in Jena for producing
multicrystalline silicon ingots. SCHOTT WACKER Solar plans to expand
the existing production and to set up new facilities for blocking and
wafering. The Joint Venture is expected to create approximately 700 new
jobs.

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