Consolidation is a nice word that covers a lot of messy ground.
Last week saw Canadian Solar's (Nasdaq:CSIQ) stock pop by more than 20 percent behind rumors that it would be acquired by China National Offshore Oil Company (CNOOC), according to reports in China Business Journal on April 14. Canadian denied reports in the Chinese news media, according to Reuters, and that promptly saw its stock settle back to its $150 million market cap.
In addition to China's module manufacturers going through an industry shift, the Chinese polysilicon industry is also going through a transformation.
SunPower (Nasdaq:SPWR) announced that as part of a cost reduction initiative, it will "re-purpose" its Fab 1 operations in the Philippines, according to a press release, and look for tenants for that site. Manufacturing will be consolidated in Fabs 2 and 3 with the intent of of incorporating a new process that reduces the number of manufacturing steps.
SunPower "expects to achieve its cost goal of approximately $0.86 per watt, on an efficiency-adjusted basis, exiting 2012." Baird Investment Banking said, "The decision is prudent given the continuing oversupply situation facing the industry. While SPWR's leading conversion efficiencies garner a pricing premium for its products, given the significant fall in prices over the past year, cost reductions remain a major area of focus."
The German solar industry is going through its own set of painful changes with the bankruptcy of Q-Cells and smaller photovoltaic manufacturers Odersun and Solon, as well as developer Phoenix Solar.