Yingli pays off some debt, releases Q1 earnings

Following the Yingli furore, which erupted mid-May when a shock EC filing warned that the company may be unable to continue as a going concern due to "substantial indebtedness", news has been swirling around the company’s future.

Yingli was quick to issue a statement refuting reports that it was about to fall flat, instead stating it was "optimistic" and "confident" about its ability to continue servicing the global solar market.

Based on today’s figures, the Chinese solar PV module manufacturing giant is hardly out of the woods. Compared to its industry peers, however, the situation is not all doom and gloom.

Total PV module shipments fell from the 939.2 MW shipped in Q4 2014, but at 754.2 MW, it did exceed its guidance. It shipped 630.8 MW in the first quarter of 2014.

Overall, Yingli suffered a net loss of RMB 363.2 million ($58.6 million) in Q1 2015, compared to RMB 550 million in Q4 2014 and RMB 341.8 million in Q1 2014. At RMB 2,905.8 million ($468.7 million) total Q1 revenues tumbled slightly from the RMB3,446.5 million reaped in Q4 2014, but were up from the previous year, which recorded RMB2,686.8 million.

Down from a gross profit of RMB 578.7 million in Q4, Yingli recorded RMB 410.8 million ($66.3 million) in Q1, primarily due to “to the decrease in total net revenues and the increase in unit manufacturing cost as a result of lower utilization rate of production capacity in the first quarter of 2015.” Q1 2014 saw a gross profit of RMB 421.3 million. This led to a Q1 gross margin of 14.1%, down from 16.8% in Q4 and 15.7% in Q1.

Adjusted non-GAAP EBIDTA was up, from RMB 94.2 million in Q4 and RMB 218.9 million inQ1 2014, to RMB 199.8 million ($32.2 million).

In positive news, Liansheng Miao, Yingli chairman and CEO said the company had paid off RMB 1.2 billion (around $193.5 million) in medium-term notes. He is confident Yingli can settle another tranche of medium-term notes totaling RMB 1 billion due in October on time. “In the long run, we will continue to reduce our debt exposure through a combination of alternative financing solutions in order to optimize our debt structure and improve our financial condition,"Miao added.

Yingli has a solar PV project pipeline totaling around 1.6GW at different approval stages in its home country, and an approximately 300 MW of PV project pipeline outside China.

Looking ahead, it expects to ship between 400 and 600 MW of PV modules to its own downstream projects in 2015, which it expects to grid connect by the end of the year. Overall, it aims to ship between 720 and 750 MW of modules in Q2, 40 to 60 MW of which will be used for its own projects; and around 3.6 GW for the full year.