Trina to increase production capacity, following strong third quarter

The news comes as the company announces its third quarter financial results, which show a record 30 percent jump in shipment volume and strong revenues surpassing a “milestone” of USD$500 million.

As of August 31, the company says it reached its targeted 2010 annualized in-house production capacities of approximately 950 megawatts (MWs) of PV cell and module capacity. Consequently, it expects actual manufacturing yield to hit 1.1 GWs of annualized capacity during the fourth quarter of this year. It added that it will also ship around 300 MWs of PV modules in the final quarter.

For the full year, Trina has raised its guidance for total PV module shipments to be approximately one GW, compared to its earlier guidance of between 900 and 930 MWs. This represents an increase of approximately 151 percent from the annual PV module shipments in 2009.

"We continue to see strong demand momentum into the fourth quarter and the outlook for 2011 is increasingly positive; we expect that demand for our products will outpace our planned capacity expansion in 2011," said Mr. Jifan Gao, chairman and CEO of Trina Solar. "Our expansion will allow us to increase sales in high growth PV markets such as the United States and Japan, while expand our presence and sales in Australia and other emerging solar markets. In parallel, our continued investments in localizing customer service and increasing service levels allow us to target higher value end-segments and high profile projects and to further differentiate our product offerings from other brands."

Third quarter results

In terms of its third quarter financial results, the company said that module shipments exceeded its previous guidance of between 250 MWs and 260 MWs, to reach 291 MWs, which represents an increase of 30.4 percent sequentially and 137.0 percent year-over-year. It cited increased brand recognition of its products in established and new PV markets, including the U.S. and Australia as primary reasons.

Net revenues, on the other hand, increased by 37.1 percent sequentially and 103.5 percent year-over-year, to hit $508.3 million. Net income, on the other hand, reached $82.9 million in the third quarter, compared to net income of $38.7 million in the second quarter and $39.8 million in the third quarter of 2009.

Meanwhile, third quarter gross profit was $159.4 million, compared to $118.9 million in the second quarter and $71.1 million in the third quarter of 2009. Overall gross margin, however, decreased from 32.1 percent in the second quarter of 2010, to 31.4 percent in the third quarter, but it did increase from the 28.5 percent seen in the third quarter of 2009. Trina said the year-over-year increase was primarily due to favorable reductions of its silicon purchase price and non-silicon manufacturing costs relative to module ASP decline.

Relating to its in-house wafer production to module production, gross margin was 37.6 percent, which is above the company’s previous guidance of mid 30s in percentage terms.

Furthermore, operating expenses in the third quarter hit $46.4 million, which represents an increase of 30.1 percent sequentially and 81.3 percent year-over-year. The sequential and yearly increases were primarily due to increased shipments, the hiring of professional personnel for the company’s European and North American regional headquarters, and the expansion in the its global sales and marketing efforts.