REC Wafer Norway files for bankruptcy14. August 2012 | Industry & Suppliers, Markets & Trends | By: Becky Beetz
Following the complete closure of its wafer operations in April, REC Wafer Norway AS now has to file for bankruptcy after parent company, REC ASA said it will not provide the necessary funding for a solvent wind-up of operations.
The liabilities of the wafer production company are said to have exceeded its assets by around NOK 1.2 billion (US$203.1 million; €164 million) as of the end of July. To avoid filing for bankruptcy, REC ASA, which own 100 percent of the shares, would have to supply the necessary funding. Having said it has taken the decision not to pursue this path, REC Wafer Norway must now file for bankruptcy.
REC ASA said its wafer subsidiary is not a guarantor under its new bank loan agreement. However, it added that additional costs of around NOK 0.4 billion will be incurred relating to guarantees, loans, and indemnity agreements.
The bankruptcy is not said to have affected either REC Solar or REC Silicon.
REC shutdown timeline
- May 24, 2011 – REC announced it would reduce production of its solar cells, wafers and modules as of July 1 in "response to the current market conditions". Wafer production was reduced by 125 MW in Q3, and cell and module production was scaled back by approximately 50 MW. Roughly 300 employees at REC’s Herøya site and 200 employees in Narvik, were affected through "temporary" lay-offs.
- August 25, 2011 – REC decided to extend its production shutdown in Norway until the end of 2011. It emerges that the company stopped its cell operations in Narvik, worth 180 MW. Around 600 employees have now been affected.
- September 28, 2011 - REC says it is considering the permanent closure of three wafer facilities and one cell plant in Norway. The company said that work would continue at its two newest multicrystalline wafer plants at Herøya, which has a 650 MW annual capacity and at its 300 MW monocrystalline plant in Glomfjord.
- October 26, 2011 – REC officially announced the permanent closure of three of its photovoltaic production plants in Norway. The plants included REC’s 500 MW wafer facility in Herøya, its 275 MW wafer multi plant in Glomfjord, and its 180 MW solar cell plant in Narvik. Around 700 employees will be affected by the decision. Overall, REC estimates that the total cost of closing down the facilities will be NOK 400 million.
- March 21, 2012 – REC decided to permanently close down its 300 MW monocrystalline wafer plant in Glomfjord. 200 employees were affected.
- April 24, 2012 – REC announced it will close the last of its wafer operations in Norway, thus affecting 460 employees.
- August 14, 2012 – REC Wafer Norway AS says it must file for bankruptcy.
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