Steve O'Rourke, an insightful longtime solar analyst, has left Deutsche Bank and is now Senior VP, Chief Strategy Officer at MEMC Electronic Materials. You can read a few of the details in the SEC filing here. It's a rather strong vote of confidence in MEMC when an analyst moves into industry in an "opportunity [...] too compelling to ignore" (O'Rourke's words).
Stock picker and loud person Jim Cramer has not been a fan of solar stocks, but he has recently singled out MEMC for favor. According to Blogging Stocks, the Mad Money host cited MEMC as his top pick within the solar sector. To back up his bullish opinion, Cramer cited factors such as the recent $380 million sale of subsidiary SunEdison's Italian property, lowball earnings estimates from analysts, and heavy insider buying by company execs in recent months.
And lastly in MEMC news, SunEdison, a solar energy services provider and subsidiary of MEMC, signed a contract with CPS Energy to deploy 30 megawatts of utility-scale solar in Texas in three separate facilities. Construction is expected to start in 2011. SunEdison also received a commitment for about $60 million of solar financing from JPMorgan. And as mentioned by Mr. Cramer, SunEdison just announced the sale of Europe's largest PV plant to FirstReserve -- a 70 megawatt facility.
And apropos of nothing, here's a quote from Peter Drucker: “Only three things happen naturally in organizations: friction, confusion, and under-performance. Everything else requires leadership.”