SolarWorld announces lay-off plan

The German solar module manufacturer will keep its production going with a considerably reduced staff starting in August. The company, which filed for preliminary insolvency in early May, said that its insolvency administrator Horst Piepenburg has already informed staff at manufacturing facilities in Freiberg and Arnstadt of the new plan. It is still unknown how many employees will be affected by the company’s decision, or when the lay-offs will be implemented. Much will depend on how order intake develops in the near future. Next week, the company will announce how many workers will be cutting according to Thomas Schulz, a representative of the insolvency administrator.

SolarWorld currently employs 1,850 people in Germany.When insolvency proceedings were started, the company had around 2,200 employees. In the first eight weeks of the proceedings, the administrator has not only reduced inventory, but he has also received orders in double-digit million range. As a result, the production lines are being further operated according to a three-shift system. Currently, however, the company is not able to obtain the necessary liquidity to maintain current staff levels after the closing of the insolvency proceedings on Aug. 1, 2017.

Order intake and the global difficulties of the solar industry are forcing the company to save costs on human resources. After the end of July, the insolvency administrator said. Furthermore, Piepenburg said that the production must be kept ongoing in the interest of potential investors and in accordance with the creditors. According to him, there are more strategic investors that are currently reviewing the company’s profitability. These companies, however, may need up to four months for their review, Piepenburg concluded.