Little daylight evident in Sunways' Q2 figures


Although strong domestic demand for inverters – driven by changes to Germany’s Renewable Energy Act (EEG) – saw volumes leap 60.2% on a year earlier to 61.2 MW peak, price pressures meant related revenues rose only 10%, to €8.8 million ($11.4 million).

The figures related to module sales are a familiar story, with retail prices tumbling a well-publicized 40% on Q2 2011 and a lack of wafers, together with production bottlenecks at partner LDK Solar, adding up to a 56.7% year-on-year fall in volume – to 9.4MW peak – and a 74% fall in revenues to €7.7 million.

Group sales revenues for the April-June period totaled €17.2 million, down more than half on the €38.7 million figure from the same three months in 2011, with a loss before interest and tax of €6.5 million, down from €6.3 million. The resulting tax loss carry-forward saw Sunways net €1.1 million in earnings after tax, compared to €200,000 in Q2 2011.

In mitigation, the Q2 2011 figures for solar cells had been buoyed by the start of Sunways’ co-operation with LDK and the group indicated growth in individual European markets such as Bulgaria and Greece as well as starting an agreement in May with Solar Energy Australia Ltd, to exclusively sell its inverters in Australia. International sales for the quarter brought in €8.2million, 47.7% of total sales and down from 50.4% year on year.

The half-year figures paint a similar picture with group sales revenues down to €27.6 million from €60.9 million in January-June 2011, an operating loss of €13.3 million up from €9.8 million and earnings after tax of €-6.2 million, coming in from €-7.3 million year on year.

Sunways announced it will rely on its brand strength and service quality, as well as improved efficiency in the module sector and has plans to enter the Chinese, U.S. and Canadian markets with LDK Solar.

"This difficult market environment constitutes a great challenge for all market participants," said Michael Wilhelm, chairman of the management board of Sunways AG in a statement. "In this phase of market consolidation, efficient actions must be based on targeted and co-ordinated market activities. In this context, the LDK Solar Group, due to the global activities of all its companies in the areas of sales and supply, will enable Sunways to strengthen its competitiveness in the long term and to return to profitable corporate growth."