SolarWorld closes in on deal for Bosch solar plant

Amid reports that Bosch is seeking to relieve itself of its solar production facilities as the company begins the process of ending solar panel production early next year, Germany’s SolarWorld has emerged as a potential buyer of Bosch’s Arnstadt solar panel plant.

News agency Reuters has reported the story, claiming that SolarWorld refused to comment while Bosch will only state that it is in talks with potential investors. At the time of writing, pv magazine has been unable to elicit any official response from either company. However, an announcement is expected shortly, probably before the end of this week.

The Arnstadt plant employs approximately 1,800 staff, meaning if reports that SolarWorld is close to securing the plant are true, many of those employees could well be kept on under the new ownership.

In March, Bosch announced that it would begin phasing out its solar operations, having struggled to make a profitable impact in the market in light of tumbling equipment prices and a damaging case of oversupply throughout the industry. The company’s solar subsidiary has lost an estimated $3.23 billion since it was first set up in 2008.

SolarWorld has itself experienced financial difficulties in recent times, so an acquisition of this magnitude could be a positive signal of intent for the company, particularly in the German market.