Total and SunPower bring solar business under one roof

The purchase essentially brings Total’s solar operations under roof, having taken out a majority stake in SunPower earlier in the year. It will also give SunPower access to the French and European markets through Tenesol’s geographical location and project experience.

The terms of the purchase agreement state that SunPower will acquire Tenesol from Total for $165.4 million U.S. dollars. Total will also purchase 18.6 million SunPower shares for $8.80 per share, which is a 50 percent premium on SunPower’s current share price. The share purchase brings Total’s ownership of SunPower up from 60 percent to approximately 66 percent. SunPower’s share price recovered 6.5 percent when the announcement was made, late last week.

Tenesol has major experience in the large and commercial rooftop market segment. Since 1983 it has installed over 500 megawatt (MW) of photovoltaics on rooftops. Overall, it has installed 2.5 gigawatt of photovoltaics. In 2010 it recorded revenues of €240 million ($314).

In a statement announcing the acquisition, Tom Werner, SunPower president and CEO said that Tenesol would give the company a downstream presence. "We said on day one that the partnership with Total would provide strength to our balance sheet, access to new markets and investment in research and development. In six short months, we have seen these benefits accrue to SunPower."