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Solar PV Corporate News Release
Panasonic Solar Promotes First Group of Authorized Installers to Premium Level
Jul 26, 2017
Benefiting from the Leading Edge Technology, TZS Announced Mono-Crystalline Wafer Price Modification
Jul 18, 2017
Canadian Solar Reports First Quarter 2017 Results
Jun 06, 2017
JinkoSolar Announces First Quarter 2017 Financial Results
Jun 05, 2017
Hanwha Q CELLS Reports
May 25, 2017
JA Solar Announces First Quarter 2017 Results
May 24, 2017
Yingli Green Energy Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2016 Results
Apr 13, 2017
Hanwha Q CELLS Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2016 Results
Mar 23, 2017
JA Solar Announces Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2016 Results
Mar 16, 2017
Higher yield of solar wafers and enhanced solar cell efficiency with new HeraGlaze coating by Heraeus
Mar 01, 2017
Heraeus enables significant higher efficiency gains with three new metallization pastes
Mar 01, 2017
First Solar, Inc. Announces Fourth Quarter & Full Year 2016 Financial Results
Feb 22, 2017
SunPower Reports Fourth Quarter 2016 Results
Feb 16, 2017
Trina Solar Announces Third Quarter 2016 Results
Nov 23, 2016
Canadian Solar Reports Third Quarter 2016 Results
Nov 21, 2016
JASolar Announces Third Quarter 2016 Financial Results
Nov 17, 2016
JinkoSolar Announces Third Quarter 2016 Financial Results
Nov 16, 2016
SunPower Reports Third Quarter 2016 Results
Nov 10, 2016
First Solar, Inc. Announces Third Quarter 2016 Financial Results
Nov 03, 2016
Hanwha Q CELLS Reports Second Quarter 2016 Results
Aug 23, 2016
Yingli Green Energy Reports Second Quarter 2016 Results
Aug 23, 2016
Canadian Solar Reports Second Quarter 2016 Results
Aug 18, 2016
JA Solar Announces Second Quarter 2016 Results
Aug 17, 2016
SunPower Reports Second Quarter 2016 Results
Aug 10, 2016
First Solar, Inc. Announces Second Quarter 2016 Financial Results
Aug 04, 2016
First Solar, Inc. Announces First Quarter 2016 Financial Results
Apr 27, 2016
JinkoSolar Announces Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2015 Financial Results
Mar 01, 2016
First Solar, Inc. Announces Fourth Quarter & Full Year 2015 Financial Results
Feb 24, 2016
SunPower Corp. announced financial results for its fourth quarter and fiscal year ended Jan. 3, 2016
Feb 18, 2016
Trina Solar Announces Receipt of a Preliminary Non-Binding Proposal to Acquire the Company
Dec 14, 2015
Hanwha Q CELLS Reports Third Quarter 2015 Results
Nov 19, 2015
JinkoSolar Announces Third Quarter 2015 Financial Results
Nov 19, 2015
JA Solar Announces Third Quarter 2015 Results
Nov 17, 2015
SunPower Announces Fiscal Year 2016 Guidance
Nov 12, 2015
SunEdison Reports Third Quarter 2015 Results
Nov 10, 2015
Canadian Solar Reports Third Quarter 2015 Results
Nov 10, 2015
Yingli Green Energy Reports Second Quarter 2015 Results
Sep 08, 2015
Hanwha Q CELLS Reports Second Quarter 2015 Results
Aug 27, 2015
TSMC to Cease Solar Manufacturing Operations
Aug 25, 2015
JinkoSolar Announces Better-Than-Expected Second Quarter 2015 Financial Results
Aug 20, 2015
Trina Solar Announces $43.1 million of Net Profits for Second Quarter 2015 Results
Aug 18, 2015
First Solar, Inc. Announces Second Quarter 2015 Financial Results with $896 million of Net sales.
Aug 05, 2015
Sunpower announced financial results of 377 million net profits for its second fiscal quarter ended June 28, 2015.
Jul 29, 2015
8point3 Energy Partners LP, a YieldCo Formed by First Solar, Inc. and SunPower Corporation, Announces Pricing of its Ini
Jun 19, 2015
JA Solar and Essel Infraprojects Limited Sign MOU on 500MW PV Joint Venture
May 25, 2015
First Solar, Inc. Announces First Quarter 2015 Financial Results with net loss of USD 62 million
May 01, 2015
Israeli Parliament Solar Project Adopts JA Solar Modules
Apr 07, 2015
JA Solar Supplies Modules Again to First Large-Scale Solar Farm in Central America
Mar 16, 2015
Hyundai offers compact 250W high-performance modules for UK rooftop market
Mar 12, 2015
JA Solar Launching 1500V PV Module
Mar 09, 2015
Trina Solar Announces New Efficiency Records for Silicon Solar Cells
Mar 05, 2015
Canadian Solar Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2014 Results
Mar 05, 2015
JA Solar Makes Breakthrough in South Pacific Market in 2014
Feb 05, 2015
First Solar Achieves Efficiency, Durability Milestones
Feb 05, 2015
JA Solar Reaches 100MWp of PV Module Shipments to Solarcentury for UK Projects in 2014
Jan 05, 2015
JA Solar Supplies 100MW of Modules to First Large-Scale Solar Farm in Pakistan
Jan 05, 2015
Hanwha Solarone Files Shareholder Circular for Acquisition of Hanwha Q CELLS
Dec 29, 2014
Motech and Topcell Announced the Signing of Merger Agreement
Dec 26, 2014
JA Solar Supplies 100MW of Modules to First Large-Scale Solar Farm in Pakistan
Dec 08, 2014
Yingli Green Energy Reports Third Quarter 2014 Results
Nov 25, 2014
Trina Solar Announces Third Quarter 2014 Results
Nov 24, 2014
Hanwha SolarOne Reports Third Quarter 2014 Results
Nov 21, 2014
JA Solar Announces Third Quarter 2014 Results
Nov 19, 2014
Trina Solar Announces New Efficiency Records for Silicon Solar Cells
Nov 17, 2014
JA Solar Sets Power Output Record of over 280W for Multi-Si 60-cells Solar Modules
Nov 17, 2014
SunPower Announces Fiscal Year 2015 Guidance
Nov 13, 2014
WINAICO launches patented micro-crack preventing HeatCap technology at PV Taiwan
Oct 22, 2014
Trina Solar Announces Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2014 Results
Jan 01, 1970

First Solar, Inc. Announces Fourth Quarter & Full Year 2016 Financial Results

  • Net sales of $3.0 billion for 2016 and $480 million for the fourth quarter
  • GAAP loss per share of $(3.48) for 2016 and $(6.92) for the fourth quarter
  • Non-GAAP EPS of $5.17 for 2016 and $1.24 for the fourth quarter
  • Cash and marketable securities of $2.0 billion, net cash of $1.8 billion
  • Maintain Non-GAAP 2017 EPS guidance

TEMPE, Ariz.-- First Solar, Inc. (Nasdaq: FSLR) today announced financial results for the fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2016. Net sales for the fourth quarter were $480 million, a decrease of $208 million from the prior quarter due to the completion of multiple systems projects during the quarter, partially offset by higher module-only sales.

The Company reported a fourth quarter loss per share of $(6.92), compared to earnings per share of $1.63 in the prior quarter. The fourth quarter was impacted by pre-tax charges of $729 million, primarily related to previously announced restructuring actions. Restructuring related charges in the third quarter were $4 million. Fourth quarter non-GAAP earnings per share, adjusted for restructuring charges and a tax expense associated with a distribution of cash to the United States, were $1.24. Net income decreased versus the prior quarter as a result of lower net sales, higher restructuring charges and an increase in tax expense, partially offset by an increase in equity in earnings. During the fourth quarter, the Company completed the sale of its remaining interest in the Desert Stateline project and recognized $125 million of profit, net of tax, in equity in earnings.

Cash and marketable securities at the end of the fourth quarter decreased slightly to $2.0 billion from $2.1 billion in the prior quarter. The decrease was due to the repayment in full of the Company's borrowing under its revolving credit facility, largely offset by cash from project sales. Cash flows from operations were $268 million in the fourth quarter. The approximately $280 million of proceeds received in the quarter from the sale of the remaining interest in the Desert Stateline project were treated as an investing cash flow.

"Despite the difficult restructuring decisions that we undertook in the fourth quarter, we ended the year with strong operational results," said Mark Widmar, CEO of First Solar. "Our best line exited the quarter running above 16.9% conversion efficiency, and for the full year our fleet averaged 16.4% efficiency, an 80 basis point improvement over the prior year. From a financial perspective we delivered full year non-GAAP earnings per share of $5.17, exceeding our guidance for the year. We ended the year with $1.8 billion of net cash and are well positioned as we move forward with our Series 6 transition."

The Company updated its 2017 revenue guidance, operating expenses and earnings per share as reflected in the following table. The revised net sales guidance incorporates the final structuring of the Moapa project sale, which allowed for full revenue recognition on the project, while the revised operating expenses guidance reflects the timing of certain restructuring charges that are now anticipated in 2017.

2017 Guidance

 

 

Prior GAAP

 

 

Current GAAP

 

 

Prior Non-GAAP

 

 

Current Non-GAAP

Net Sales

 

 

$2.5B to $2.6B

 

 

$2.8B to $2.9B

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gross Margin %

 

 

12.5% to 14.5%

 

 

11% to 13%

 

 

 

 

 

 

Operating Expenses

 

 

$290M to $305M

 

 

$335M to $380M

 

 

$280M to $300M

 

 

Unchanged

Operating Income

 

 

$30M to $75M

 

 

($40M) to $25M

 

 

$40M to $80M

 

 

Unchanged

Earnings per Share

 

 

($0.10) to $0.45

 

 

($0.80) to ($0.05)

 

 

$0.00 to $0.50

 

 

Unchanged

Net Cash Balance

 

 

$1.4B to $1.6B

 

 

Unchanged

 

 

 

 

 

 

Operating Cash Flow1

 

 

$550M to $650M

 

 

$250M to $350M

 

 

 

 

 

 

Capital Expenditures

 

 

$525M to $625M

 

 

Unchanged

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shipments

 

 

2.4GW to 2.6GW

 

 

Unchanged

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.

 

Defined as cash and marketable securities less expected debt at the end of 2017

 

For a reconciliation of the non-GAAP measures presented above to measures presented in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the United States ("GAAP"), see the tables below.

First Solar has scheduled a conference call for today, February 21, 2017 at 4:30 p.m. ET to discuss this announcement. A live webcast of this conference call is available at http://investor.firstsolar.com/events.cfm.

An audio replay of the conference call will also be available approximately two hours after the conclusion of the call. The audio replay will remain available until February 28, 2017 at 7:30 p.m. ET and can be accessed by dialing 888-203-1112 if you are calling from within the United States, or 719-457-0820 if you are calling from outside the United States, and entering the replay pass code 6887174. A replay of the webcast will be available on the Investors section of the Company's website approximately two hours after the conclusion of the call and will remain available for approximately 90 calendar days.

About First Solar, Inc.

First Solar is a leading global provider of comprehensive photovoltaic ("PV") solar systems which use its advanced module and system technology. The Company's integrated power plant solutions deliver an economically attractive alternative to fossil-fuel electricity generation today. From raw material sourcing through end-of-life module recycling, First Solar's renewable energy systems protect and enhance the environment. For more information about First Solar, please visit www.firstsolar.com.

For First Solar Investors

This release contains forward-looking statements which are made pursuant to safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements include statements, among other things, concerning: effects on our financial statements and guidance resulting from certain module manufacturing changes and associated restructuring activities; our business strategy, including anticipated trends and developments in and management plans for our business and the markets in which we operate; future financial results, operating results, revenues, gross margin, operating expenses, products, projected costs (including estimated future module collection and recycling costs), warranties, solar module technology and cost reduction roadmaps, restructuring, product reliability, investments in unconsolidated affiliates and capital expenditures; our ability to continue to reduce the cost per watt of our solar modules; our ability to reduce the costs to construct PV solar power systems; research and development programs and our ability to improve the conversion efficiency of our solar modules; our ability to expand manufacturing capacity worldwide; sales and marketing initiatives; and competition. These forward-looking statements are often characterized by the use of words such as "estimate," "expect," "anticipate," "project," "plan," "intend," "seek," "believe," "forecast," "foresee," "likely," "may," "should," "goal," "target," "might," "will," "could," "predict," "continue" and the negative or plural of these words and other comparable terminology. Forward-looking statements are only predictions based on our current expectations and our projections about future events. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. We undertake no obligation to update any of these forward-looking statements for any reason. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause our actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these statements. These factors include, but are not limited to, the matters discussed in Item 1A "Risk Factors," of our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

FIRST SOLAR, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
(In thousands, except share data)
(Unaudited)

 

 

 

 

December 31,
2016

December 31,
2015

ASSETS

Current assets:

Cash and cash equivalents

$

1,347,155

$

1,126,826

Marketable securities

607,991

703,454

Accounts receivable trade, net

266,687

500,629

Accounts receivable, unbilled and retainage

205,530

59,171

Inventories

363,219

380,424

Balance of systems parts

62,776

136,889

Deferred project costs

701,105

187,940

Notes receivable, affiliates

15,000

1,276

Prepaid expenses and other current assets

217,157

 

248,977

Total current assets

3,786,620

3,345,586

Property, plant and equipment, net

629,142

1,284,136

PV solar power systems, net

448,601

93,741

Project assets and deferred project costs

800,770

1,111,137

Deferred tax assets, net

252,655

357,693

Restricted cash and investments

371,307

333,878

Investments in unconsolidated affiliates and joint ventures

242,361

399,805

Goodwill

14,462

84,985

Other intangibles, net

87,970

110,002

Inventories

100,512

107,759

Notes receivable, affiliates

54,737

17,887

Other assets

78,076

 

69,722

Total assets

$

6,867,213

 

$

7,316,331

LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY

Current liabilities:

Accounts payable

$

148,730

$

337,668

Income taxes payable

5,288

1,330

Accrued expenses

262,977

409,452

Current portion of long-term debt

27,966

38,090

Billings in excess of costs and estimated earnings

115,623

87,942

Payments and billings for deferred project costs

284,440

28,580

Other current liabilities

54,683

 

57,738

Total current liabilities

899,707

960,800

Accrued solar module collection and recycling liability

166,277

163,407

Long-term debt

160,422

251,325

Other liabilities

428,120

 

392,312

Total liabilities

1,654,526

 

1,767,844

Commitments and contingencies

Stockholders' equity:

Common stock, $0.001 par value per share; 500,000,000 shares authorized; 104,034,731 and
101,766,797 shares issued and outstanding at December 31, 2016 and 2015, respectively

104

102

Additional paid-in capital

2,759,211

2,742,795

Accumulated earnings

2,463,279

2,790,110

Accumulated other comprehensive (loss) income

(9,907

)

15,480

Total stockholders' equity

5,212,687

 

5,548,487

Total liabilities and stockholders' equity

$

6,867,213

 

$

7,316,331

 

 

FIRST SOLAR, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS
(In thousands, except per share amounts)
(Unaudited)

 

 

 

 

Three Months Ended
December 31,

Years Ended
December 31,

2016

 

2015

2016

 

2015

Net sales

$

480,434

$

942,324

$

2,951,328

$

3,578,995

Cost of sales

416,845

 

710,886

 

2,247,349

 

2,659,728

 

Gross profit

63,589

231,438

703,979

919,267

Operating expenses:

Research and development

29,471

36,728

124,762

130,593

Selling, general and administrative

70,370

62,887

261,994

255,192

Production start-up

214

1,021

16,818

Restructuring and asset impairments

728,946

 

 

818,792

 

 

Total operating expenses

829,001

 

99,615

 

1,206,569

 

402,603

 

Operating (loss) income

(765,412

)

131,823

(502,590

)

516,664

Foreign currency loss, net

(5,748

)

(1,887

)

(14,007

)

(6,868

)

Interest income

6,364

6,072

25,193

22,516

Interest expense, net

(3,182

)

(4,180

)

(20,538

)

(6,975

)

Other (expense) income, net

(8,473

)

(1,773

)

40,252

 

(5,502

)

(Loss) income before taxes and equity in earnings of unconsolidated affiliates

(776,451

)

130,055

(471,690

)

519,835

Income tax (expense) benefit

(89,707

)

15,290

(58,219

)

6,156

Equity in earnings of unconsolidated affiliates, net of tax

146,298

 

18,790

 

171,945

 

20,430

 

Net (loss) income

$

(719,860

)

$

164,135

 

$

(357,964

)

$

546,421

 

Net (loss) income per share:

Basic

$

(6.92

)

$

1.62

 

$

(3.48

)

$

5.42

 

Diluted

$

(6.92

)

$

1.60

 

$

(3.48

)

$

5.37

 

Weighted-average number of shares used in per share calculations:

Basic

103,970

 

101,400

 

102,866

 

100,886

 

Diluted

103,970

 

102,293

 

102,866

 

101,815

 

 

Non-GAAP Financial Measures

In the press release above, we provided non-GAAP earnings per share for the three months and year ended December 31, 2016. We have included these non-GAAP financial measures to adjust for (i) restructuring, asset impairment and related charges primarily associated with the transition from Series 4 to Series 6 production and the end of our crystalline silicon operations, (ii) write-downs of certain crystalline silicon module inventories, (iii) contingent consideration adjustments related to the likelihood of achieving certain crystalline silicon module shipment milestones in connection with our TetraSun acquisition, (iv) the reversal of a liability associated with an uncertain tax position related to the income of a foreign subsidiary, (v) the tax expense associated with a distribution of cash to the United States from a foreign subsidiary and (vi) the tax effect associated with these items. We believe non-GAAP earnings per share, when taken together with corresponding GAAP financial measures, to be relevant and useful information to our investors because it provides them with additional information in assessing our financial operating results. Our management uses this non-GAAP financial measure in evaluating our operating performance. However, this measure has limitations, including that it excludes the effect of certain changes to our assets and liabilities and certain amounts that we may ultimately have to pay in cash. Accordingly, this non-GAAP financial measure should be considered in addition to, and not as a substitute for, or superior to net earnings per share prepared in accordance with GAAP. The following is the reconciliation of earnings per share prepared in accordance with GAAP to non-GAAP earnings per share for each period presented (in millions, except per share amounts):

 

 

Three Months Ended

December 31, 2016

Net loss

$

(719.9

)

Restructuring and asset impairments

728.9

Write-downs of crystalline silicon module inventories

2.6

Tax expense on cash distribution

195.6

Tax effect

 

(78.1

)

Non-GAAP net income

$

129.1

 

 

Weighted-average number of shares used for diluted earnings per share

104.0

GAAP loss per share

$

(6.92

)

 

Weighted-average number of shares used for diluted earnings per share

104.3

Non-GAAP earnings per share

$

1.24

 

 

 

Year Ended

December 31, 2016

Net loss

$

(358.0

)

Restructuring and asset impairments

818.8

Write-downs of crystalline silicon module inventories

16.0

TetraSun contingent consideration adjustments

(7.4

)

Foreign tax benefit

(35.4

)

Tax expense on cash distribution

195.6

Tax effect

 

(94.7

)

Non-GAAP net income

$

534.9

 

 

Weighted-average number of shares used for diluted earnings per share

102.9

GAAP loss per share

$

(3.48

)

 

Weighted-average number of shares used for diluted earnings per share

103.4

Non-GAAP earnings per share

$

5.17

 

In the press release above, we provided non-GAAP guidance as of the date of this press release for our operating expenses, operating income and earnings per share for the year ending December 31, 2017 ("non-GAAP 2017 guidance"). We have included these forward-looking non-GAAP financial measures to adjust our GAAP projections of such financial measures for, as applicable, (i) restructuring, asset impairment and related charges primarily associated with the transition from Series 4 to Series 6 production and (ii) additional restructuring activities expected during the remainder of the year. Other GAAP charges, including those related to certain asset impairments, restructuring programs or litigation, that would be excluded from non-GAAP earnings per share are possible for the periods presented, but such amounts are dependent on numerous factors that we currently cannot ascertain with sufficient certainty or are presently unknown. These GAAP charges are also dependent upon future events and valuations that have not yet occurred or been performed. We believe these forward-looking non-GAAP financial measures, when taken together with our corresponding financial guidance based on GAAP, to be relevant and useful information to our investors because they provide them with additional information in assessing our financial operating results. Our management also uses such non-GAAP guidance in evaluating our operating performance. However, such measures have limitations, including that they exclude the effect of certain changes to our assets and liabilities, certain amounts that we may ultimately have to pay in cash and certain tax impacts. Accordingly, these forward-looking non-GAAP financial measures that exclude the aforementioned items should be considered in addition to, and not as substitutes for or superior to, financial guidance based on GAAP. The following are the reconciliations of our non-GAAP 2017 guidance to our current and prior GAAP guidance (in millions, except per share amounts):

Reconciliation of Non-GAAP 2017 Guidance to GAAP 2017 Guidance

 

 

GAAP
Guidance

 

 

Restructuring
Charges1

 

 

Non-GAAP
Guidance

Operating Expenses

$335 to $380

$(55) to $(80)

$280 to $300

Operating Income

$(40) to $25

$80 to $55

$40 to $80

Earnings per Share

$(0.80) to $(0.05)

$0.80 to $0.55

$0.00 to $0.50

 

1.

 

$55 to $80 million of restructuring related charges associated with the acceleration of our transition to Series 6 module manufacturing

 

 

Reconciliation of Prior Non-GAAP 2017 Guidance to Prior GAAP 2017 Guidance

 

 

 

 

 

 

GAAP
Guidance

Restructuring
Charges1

Non-GAAP
Guidance

Operating Expenses

$290 to $305

$(10) to $(5)

$280 to $300

Operating Income

$30 to $75

$10 to $5

$40 to $80

Earnings per Share

$(0.10) to $0.45

$0.10 to $0.05

$0.00 to $0.50

 

1.

 

$5 to $10 million of other charges related to restructuring of manufacturing operations

First Solar Investors
Steve Haymore
+1 602-414-9315
stephen.haymore@firstsolar.com
or
First Solar Media
Steve Krum
+1 602-427-3359
steve.krum@firstsolar.com

Source: First Solar, Inc.

 

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