Yesterday Wacker Chemie released results from its fourth quarter and full year 2016, which reveal a polysilicon business as strong as ever. The polysilicon division reported a 22% increase in year-over-year sales to €295 million, as well as 20% increase in EBITDA to €85 million.
Polysilicon reported a healthy EBITDA margin of 29%, which is down from the previous quarter’s 32%. Wacker notes that while it sold more polysilicon following a market recovery in Q4, that pricing during the quarter was lower than Q3, which it says reflected shipping times to Asia.
Polysilicon is by far Wacker’s most profitable division. Such strong results boosted full year results as well, with the division pushing up to €1.09 billion in revenues, and an EBITDA of €285 million.
Wacker Chemie is the only Western PV maker who is selling into China at present, through a “minimum price” deal negotiated directly with the Chinese government that is very similar to the Minimum Import Price set by the EU on Chinese solar products.
There is benefit here not only for the only Western polysilicon maker to avoid punitive Chinese tariffs, but for Chinese solar manufacturers as well. Polysilicon experts note that Chinese demand for Wacker’s polysilicon remains strong, as domestic Chinese companies makers are still struggling to produce polysilicon of comparable quality.