First Solar, Inc.
) has entered into an agreement with XSOL Co., Ltd. (XSOL) to
deliver First Solar's cadmium telluride (CdTe) thin film modules in
Japan. The aim of the agreement is to install 100 megawatts (MW) DC
annually. The market reacted positively to the news with First
Solar's share price edging up around 2.3% to $65.53 on Jul 28, 2014
from the closing price last Friday.
Kyoto, Japan-based XSOL is a solar energy company, which provides
full-service photovoltaic (PV) systems. The company is engaged in
the design, construction, construction management and sales of
industrial, public and residential solar generation systems.
Currently, demand for solar energy is gradually on the rise given
the growing awareness about its advantages. Japan figures
significantly among the budding solar markets particularly after
the Fukushima disaster that led to the deactivation of its nuclear
As per shipment figures reported by the Japan Photovoltaic Energy
Association, the country's PV market recorded 60% year-over-year
growth in the final quarter of the country's fiscal year 2013,
ended on Mar 31, 2014. In fiscal 2014, Japan is expected to install
above 10 gigawatts (GW) of solar power, more than 50% of which will
be utility-scale solar.
First Solar is looking to tap the growing Japanese market for solar
energy. In Nov 2013, the company announced that it will invest
around $100 million in Japan to build solar power plants along with
local partners. This will give First Solar a presence in small
scale solar projects in this emerging market.
To that end, First Solar has inked this strategic alliance with
XSOL, which has a track record of promoting solar products in Japan
on behalf of its foreign partners.
In Jan 2014, XSOL inked an agreement with another renowned solar PV
Yingli Green Energy Holding Company Limited
) to sell and promote YGE 60 Cell Series modules in Japan. XSOL
also utilizes multicrystalline modules, manufactured by
Canadian Solar Inc.
), at its several projects based in Japan and South Korea. As XSOL
has strong knowledge of the domestic solar market, the latest
business alliance is expected to enable First Solar to book more
contracts from Japanese customers.
First Solar continues to upgrade the standard of its product as
well as service quality. The company's CdTe thin film technology
efficiently converts sunlight into electricity. Its thin film
modules have the highest theoretical efficiency of any PV material
and are considerably higher than crystalline silicon. These modules
have a superior temperature coefficient and spectral response, and
also maximize value and minimize risk for customers.
In Mar 2014, First Solar inked an agreement with
General Electric Company
) to develop a state-of-the-art utility-scale PV power plant
design. The partnership will combine First Solar's thin-film CdTe
modules with General Electric's new 4-MW ProSolar 1500 Volt
inverter/transformer system. When this is combined with ProSolar
inverter/transformer stations, it increases the magnitude of the
solar array served by each inverter.
First Solar currently has a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
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