Chinese module manufacturer Astronergy has agreed to buy the Conergy SolarModule panel module factory in the eastern city of Frankfurt.
The acquisition of the factory in Frankfurt (located on the Oder River in the state of Brandenburg rather than the city of the same name in the western German state of Hesse) was expected and marks the second purchase of Conergy's core assets following the Hamburg-based group's insolvency in July.
In August, U.S. equity investment firm Kawa took over the German group's global sales and service units, securing some 280 jobs.
Astronergy modules "made in Germany"
"Our entrance into the German module production is a strategically important step for Astronergy," said Astronergy Vice President Chuan Lu. "We will continue to manufacture high-quality panels at the Frankfurt site in the future. Quality and security are playing and increasingly important role in long-term investments. With modules ‘made in Germany,' we can offer this to our customers."
Lu added that the integration of the factory into Astronergy's existing structures would lead to a number of advantages and synergies in all areas of the value chain.
The new company will trade under the name of Astronergy Solarmodule GmbH.
"We will produce profitably at the Frankfurt factory and further develop the site in the future," Lu said.
Sven K. Starke, the factory's managing director, added: Astronergy is a strong and reliable partner for our factory. Together, we are able to preserve the site as well as approximately 210 jobs in Frankfurt (Oder) and offer the employees a good perspective in the long term. We are very happy that the result achieved was worth our efforts. With the acquisition, we can look ahead into a bright and successful future."
Some 210 employees at the factory are expected to remain at the Frankfurt plant while some 70 workers will likely lose their jobs, Conergy said in statement.
Conergy said it has cooperated with Astronergy for many years and stressed that the partnership would continue in the future. The two companies plan to soon sign a supply agreement for modules from the Frankfurt factory, Conergy said, adding that it would continue to offer its customers solutions in all segments.
Conergy added that the search for an investor for its second production unit, Mounting Systems GmbH in Rangsdorf, Germany, was well underway. The racking specialist's managing directors expect to reach an agreement by Christmas at the latest, the company said, adding that Mounting Systems remained operational with stable order books.
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