Bloomberg News

Solarhybrid May Use First Solar Panels in California Projects

November 17, 2011

Nov. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Solarhybrid AG, a German renewable energy project developer, may use panels from First Solar Inc. on two California power plants that it’s seeking to buy.

Solarhybrid asked First Solar, the world’s largest thin- film solar company, to form a joint venture as part of its effort to buy Solar Millennium AG’s U.S. project pipeline of 2,250 megawatts, Solarhybrid Chief Executive Officer Tom Schroder said today in a statement.

First Solar may provide panels for the 1,000-megawatt Blythe project and the 500-megawatt Palen plant if the purchase is completed. Schroder said he expects to conclude negotiations with Solar Millennium by the end of the month.

Solarhybrid Chief Financial Officer Albert Klein confirmed that talks with First Solar are under way. “We’re also talking to other parties and no direction has been decided,” he said by phone. Solarhybrid, of Brilon, Germany, conditionally agreed Oct. 6 to buy Solar Millennium’s U.S. projects.

Solar Millennium, of Erlangen, Germany, develops solar thermal systems, which use the sun’s energy to heat liquid and power steam generators. Falling prices for photovoltaic panels have made them less expensive than solar-thermal, and Solar Millennium said in August it would switch its Blythe project to the less-costly alternative.

Alan Bernheimer, a spokesman for Tempe, Arizona-based First Solar, declined to comment.

First Solar fell 0.1 percent to $44.92 at 1:58 p.m. in New York. In Germany, Solar Millennium surged 23 percent to 1.78 euros and Solarhybrid rose 2.1 percent to 9.20 euros.

--With assistance from Stefan Nicola in Berlin. Editors: Will Wade, Randall Hackley

To contact the reporter on this story: Christopher Martin in New York at cmartin11@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net


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