aleo sets its sights on international market

The German module manufacturer increased its revenues by 47.2 percent to reach €553.5 million (2009: €376.1 million). Meanwhile, its earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) increased more than two-fold to hit €43 million (2009: €16 million), which helped to generate a "very solid" EBIT margin of 7.8 percent (2009: 4.3 percent).

"With these results, and particularly the significant sales increase, we are very satisfied," York zu Putlitz, CEO and CFO of aleo tells pv magazine.

In a statement, aleo went on to say that its solar module plants operated at full capacity last year, producing 267 megawatts (MW) worth of modules. This is up from 139 MW in 2009. As such, it says that it expects to expand production capacity further, from 250 MW to 390 MW.

The company adds that it generated over half of its revenue in the second part of 2010 outside of its home market, due to the fact that the first six months of the year were "dominated by pull-forward effects and high revenue in Germany, due to the amendment of the German Renewable Energy Act".

Overall, aleo’s international operations accounted for 35.8 percent of its revenue, which is up from 22.7 percent in 2009. The company’s main markets were Italy, France and Greece. "This shows just how successfully we were able to implement our internationalization strategy," continues zu Putlitz.

In particular, he says that the company sees future growth opportunities in France and Italy. "The decisions in solar promotion are not fully against us," he states, adding that the conditions for small rooftop systems are attractive.

In the future, aleo also intends to be actively involved outside of Europe. The company already has sales contacts worldwide, and has delivered modules to the U.S., Australia, Israel and Mexico. Zu Putlitz explains that the proportion of PV project sales outside Europe was relatively low in 2010, at €7 million. However, he believes it will increase this year.

In terms of 2011 revenue, aleo anticipates revenue of "at least" €560 million together with a "comparatively solid" EBIT margin.

Bosch takeover

At the end of February, Bosch announced that it wanted to take aleo over. The company currently holds a stake of just under 82 percent in the German manufacturer. It offered the remaining stockholders €22 per share. A final decision is expected to be published in the next one to two weeks. Zu Putlitz concludes by saying that if aleo is fully taken over, he believes the company will retain its brand identity.