Wuxi Suntech still owned by Suntech Power Holdings subsidiary, says PricewaterhouseCoopers

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on email

Updated. PricewaterhouseCoopers, Suntech Power Holdings' appointed liquidators in the Cayman Islands have claimed that Wuxi Suntech is owned by Power Solar System Co., a direct subsidiary of Suntech Power Holdings, casting doubt on the deal to sell the PV manufacturer's Chinese arm.

If correct, the PWC claims mean the sale of Wuxi Suntech to Jiangsu Shunfeng Photovoltaic Technology Co. must legally be approved by PSS before going ahead.

Wuxi Suntech earlier this week accepted Shunfeng’s RMB3 billion (US$492 million) bid, pending approval by a local Wuxi court of a proposed restructuring plan.

But a statement issued by the PWC liquidators regarding a Suntech Power Holdings SEC Form 6-K filing, signed by Suntech Power Holdings general counsel, Kim H. Liou, would seem to throw the deal into doubt.

The SEC statement says in full:

“On 7 November 2013, the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands appointed Mr David Walker and Mr Ian Stokoe of PricewaterhouseCoopers as joint provisional liquidators (the “JPLs”) of Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd (“Suntech Power”), a company incorporated in the Cayman Islands. The JPLs intend to work with the Suntech Power Board and its various stakeholders to attempt to restructure Suntech Power and its affiliated group companies (the “Group”).

“We refer to Suntech Power’s Form 6-K Filing dated 19 July 2013 which disclosed certain transfers and disposals of the shares of Suntech Power Japan Corporation (“Suntech Japan”) and Suntech Power Investment Pte., Ltd. (“Suntech Singapore”) to Wuxi Suntech Power Co., Ltd (“Wuxi Suntech”) purportedly made in connection with intragroup debt restructuring (the “Purported Share Disposals”).

“We hereby put all relevant parties on notice that the JPLs will investigate and pursue the Group’s rights to the fullest extent in respect of the Purported Share Disposals. Both Suntech Japan and Suntech Singapore were owned by Power Solar System Co., Ltd (“PSS”) and PSS is an immediate subsidiary of Suntech Power. PSS may be insolvent under the laws of the British Virgin Islands (“BVI”), the jurisdiction in which it is incorporated. As such, the Purported Share Disposals undertaken by PSS early this year may be voidable under BVI Law.

“The JPLs are also aware of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange announcement made by Shunfeng Photovoltaic International Ltd on 1 November 2013 in relation to its proposed purchase of the entire equity interest of Wuxi Suntech by its subsidiary Jiangsu Shunfeng Photovoltaic Technology Co., Ltd. PSS is the 100% shareholder of Wuxi Suntech and any transfer or disposal of Wuxi Suntech’s shares requires the prior written agreement and consent of PSS. Suntech Power has instructed the directors of PSS that they are NOT authorised (in any way, whether directly or indirectly) to transfer or otherwise dispose of (in any way) any assets of PSS without the prior written approval of the JPLs. This includes any transfer or disposal of the shares of Wuxi Suntech. As of today’s date, the JPLs have not given their approval to any transfer or disposal of the shares of Wuxi Suntech to Jiangsu Shunfeng Photovoltaic Technology Co., Ltd or any other company or entity.

“The JPLs reserve all the rights against any person or entity who may have participated in or facilitated (in any way) any transfers or disposals of the shares of Suntech Japan, Suntech Singapore and/or Wuxi Suntech referred to herein and any potential subsequent transfer of those shares, including the proposed purchase of the entire equity interest of Wuxi Suntech by Jiangsu Shunfeng Photovoltaic Technology Co., Ltd.”

The SEC Form 6-K filing in July, 2013 was made during the tenure of David King as CEO and interim CFO of Suntech Power Holdings. He was forced out in early September.

However, the HKSE statement by Shunfeng at the beginning November would have been expected to have been issued with the consent of the court in Wuxi that is handling the bankruptcy proceedings of Wuxi Suntech and the bidding process that led to Shunfeng technically acquiring Wuxi Suntech.

The move by PricewaterhouseCoopers puts into question the entire legality of the bankruptcy proceedings in China and raises issues over which group of executives the administrators in China were dealing with and which executives PricewaterhouseCoopers is acting in partnership with. 

PWC was hired by Suntech Power Holdings after it was granted liquidation to protect itself against the efforts of creditors to recoup some of the US$540 million bond on which the company defaulted earlier this year.

Update: Nov 14

According to a Suntech Power Holdings representative, contacted by PV Tech, the Wuxi court appointed administrators of Wuxi Suntech’s restructuring are expected to finalise the sale of the company to Jiangsu Shunfeng over the next few days or into next week.

It is understood that no foreign courts would have any jurisdiction over the Wuxi court bankruptcy and restructuring proceedings of Wuxi Suntech.

The current board of directors of Suntech Power Holdings, including Zhou Weiping, interim CEO and interim CFO, were said to be continuing to work closely with administrators acting on behalf of the Chinese bankruptcy court and PricewaterhouseCoopers administrators acting in the Cayman Islands proceedings. 

However, in a HKSE filing, Jiangsu Shunfeng acknowledged that it was aware of the developments raised in the PricewaterhouseCoopers filing and cautioned the following;

“The company cannot guarantee that no interested parties may take steps to object to the Restructuring Plan, including the making of an application to the Wuxi Intermediate People’s Court to object to the approval of the Restructuring Plan.”

19 August 2021
The utility-scale PV market is poised for exponential growth and yet the industry still has many fundamental opportunities to improve on standards and best practice. Tracker shade loss has been one of those topics that deserve more attention, but has been typically handled by derate factors rather than trying to accurately forecast the loss over the life of the system. Join Nextracker’s subject matter experts, Aron Dobos and Neelesh Umachandran, and Rounak Kharait, director of solar energy assessments at DNV, for a webinar about why shade modeling matters and recommendations on what the solar industry should do about it.
25 August 2021
Energy Next is a new industry exhibition focusing on the latest renewable energy and energy efficiency technology, which will be held for the first time in 2021 in Sydney, Australia alongside the Clean Energy Council’s Australian Clean Energy Summit, the peak gathering of leaders driving Australia's energy transformation. Organised by the same people behind Australia’s largest clean energy event, All-Energy Australia, Energy Next will give visitors two days of access to key suppliers in the industry, free-to-attend professional development and industry workshops, and networking opportunities to better understand clean energy issues and solutions and learn about the latest developments in this transformational, dynamic sector.
25 August 2021
The Intersolar Summit Brasil Nordeste takes place in Fortaleza, Brazil. It addresses leading local and international experts on solar power and renewable energy in the region. The Summit’s mission is to provide in-depth education, enable high-quality networking opportunities, expand the use of PV technologies at regional and national level and strengthen the local PV industry. The Intersolar Summit Brasil Nordeste is organized by Intersolar South America - Latin America’s largest exhibition and conference for the solar industry: Solar Promotion International GmbH, Pforzheim, Freiburg Management and Marketing International GmbH (FMMI) and Aranda Eventos & Congressos Ltda, São Paulo as co-organizer.
25 August 2021
Join us to hear directly from the CTOs and heads-of-research from the top-20 cell/wafer producers to the PV industry today. The event will focus on predicting the key metrics underpinning the next big shift to n-type with answers to the key questions: When will the transition to n-type happen? Which companies will be first to 10 GW capacity and production? Who will be the key equipment suppliers for the new production lines? Which n-type process flow/architecture will emerge as the front-runner? What will polysilicon purity and wafer thickness levels look like for optimized n-type manufacturing? What will the upstream poly/wafer supply-chain look like in 5 years from now?
26 August 2021
In this webinar, JA Solar will present its product portfolio based on the latest technologies to improve your PV projects, ensuring maximum reliability and performance. During the webinar we will receive insight from JA Solar about its solar technology roadmap and how the manufacturer is providing customers with innovative solutions to suit their needs, while we will also analyse how to determine the best product solution for each solar project.
6 September 2021
The 38th European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition will be held online from 6 - 10 September 2021, allowing PV experts from all around the globe to participate with just one click! The EU PVSEC is the world's leading forum for PV Research and Development and the biggest Conference on PV Solar Energy worldwide. That is why PV experts from all around the globe are keen on gathering together each year to be part of this specialist’s event, to present and discuss the latest developments in Photovoltaics, to network and to conduct business.

Read Next

July 29, 2021
Unigreen Energy, owned by Hevel majority shareholder Ream Management LLC, has broken ground on a wafer and cell manufacturing plant that will produce 1.3GW of silicon n-type monocrystalline ingots and wafers as well as 1GW of heterojunction technology (HJT) solar cells.
July 29, 2021
Meyer Burger has revealed plans to launch a solar roof tile product, expanding its rooftop solar product range.
July 29, 2021
US residential solar installer SunPower has partnered with EV charging provider Wallbox to add EV charging technologies to its portfolio.
July 29, 2021
US residential solar installer Sunnova said it was investing in its end-to-end solar services to cater for customers demanding more from their rooftop installations.
July 29, 2021
The US Senate has passed a new bipartisan infrastructure bill after weeks of protracted discussions, establishing US$550 billion in new infrastructure funding as part of an investment described as “once-in-a-generation”.
July 29, 2021
Power product supplier Generac upgraded its forecast for 2021 after reporting an “exceptional” set of Q2 2021 results, boosted by strong sales growth in its residential and commercial and industrial (C&I) markets.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Webinars
August 19, 2021
At 9am (PT) | 6pm (CEST)
Solar Media Events
August 25, 2021
Solar Media Events
October 6, 2021
Solar Media Events
October 19, 2021