First Solar forms group for large-scale PV projects; starts operation of its 1.3 MW solar power plant


"With the pending completion of First Solar’s acquisition of NextLight, this part of our global business represents the next leg of growth for our industry and First Solar," said Rob Gillette, First Solar CEO. "Jens brings significant financial, operations and market expertise to the utility systems business in order to provide our customers with a full PV system solution to their renewable energy needs."

First Solar will have power purchase agreements for 2.2 gigawatts of utility-scale solar projects in North America when the NextLight acquisition closes, which is expected in the current quarter. To date, the company has built or has under construction 189 megawatts of utility systems projects in North America.

The company has said it will immediately begin a search for a new CFO. Mr. Meyerhoff will remain CFO until a new CFO is appointed.

Meanwhile, the company has also announced it has started operation of a 1.3 megawatt solar-power-plant on its Frankfurt (Oder) facility’s roof. For the first time, says the company, it now represents the entire value chain of photovoltaics in Frankfurt (Oder), from manufacturing of the solar modules and power generation to recycling.

The company went on to say that with the new solar-power-plant will, in the future, also generate its own environmentally-friendly power in addition to manufacturing solar modules and recycling.

“As one of the most important future industries, the solar industry is of tremendous significance for Brandenburg,” says Ralf Christoffers, Minister for Economic Affairs of Brandenburg. “For years now, we have been successfully promoting the sustainable support of renewable energy and are therefore pleased that First Solar is taking the lead in an exemplary manner and is now using solar energy to manufacture its modules.”

The new solar power plant has a capacity of 1.3 megawatts and will generate more than 1000 megawatt hours of clean energy every year. Mathematically, continues the company, this corresponds to the needs of 366 three-person households and an annual carbon dioxide savings of around 875 tons.