SunPower (NASDAQ:SPWRA) (NASDAQ:SPWRB) reported their second-quarter results today.  Here's a quick rundown for the high-efficiency solar panel manufacturer and solar power provider.

SunPower's Q2 revenues were $384.2 million, up from last quarter's $347.3 million and significantly more than the the $299.3 million in Q2 2009.  Gross margin has also improved over last quarter and last year to 22.9 percent (all figures GAAP unless otherwise noted).  Net loss for the quarter was $6.2 million.

Second quarter highlights included the announcement of a world record 24.2 percent efficiency solar cell and  a joint venture with AUO to operate the 1.4-gigawatt Fab 3 facility in Malaysia, which will begin solar cell production in the fourth quarter of this year.

SunPower quotes its recent and projected cost per watt:

  • Q4 2009  $1.91
  • Q4 2010  $1.71
  • Q4 2011  $1.48

Those numbers are significantly higher than industry averages and the industry-leading $0.76 quoted by First Solar (NASDQ:FSLR) in their most recent quarter.

But SunPower also quotes an efficiency-adjusted cost per watt versus thin-film 11 percent efficient panels on fixed tilt.  That would be with First Solar in mind, obviously.  Here are the adjusted cost-per-watt numbers:

  • Q4 2009  $1.01
  • Q4 2010  $0.92
  • Q4 2011  $0.71


According to SunPower, efficiency adjustments consider the BoS and tracking benefits of high-efficiency panels.  When viewed through that lens, things look a lot better for SunPower.  SunPower's vertical integration and ownership of the customer does allow them the luxury of higher costs per watt and ASPs. 

SunPower's 2010 guidance looks for a strong Q3 of $825 million to $1.025 billion and a 2010 total of $2 billion to $2.25 billion at a gross margin of 18 percent to 20 percent.

Tags: c-si, first solar, high efficiency, solar panels, sunpower, thin film