MAINZ, Germany & TEMPE, Ariz.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--First Solar, Inc. (Nasdaq: FSLR) today announced that its advanced thin-film photovoltaic (PV) modules will power four solar energy plants in France, with a combined capacity of 48 megawatts (MW).
The projects - developed and owned by Photosol, a French renewable energy company - are being constructed in the country’s Auvergne and Midi-Pyrénées regions: three plants, with a total capacity of 37MW, are located in the communes of Dompierre sur Bresbe, Gennetines and Marmanhac; a fourth facility, with a capacity of 11MW, is being built in Sarrazac. Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) services for all four projects are being provided by Jayme da Costa Energie, a leading French engineering company and a longstanding Photosol partner since 2011.
The plants have been designed to have a minimal impact on the communities and ecosystems they are located in: while three of the facilities are built on pastureland - allowing landowners the additional benefit of being able to graze livestock at the sites - the fourth is sited near an oak forest and includes access for wild animals.
“As France actively promotes the adoption of solar energy, these projects will contribute towards the country’s efforts to diversify its energy mix. We expect these projects to make a significant local impact by providing communities with clean energy and contributing significantly to Europe’s CO2 reduction goals,” said David Guinard, Managing Director of Photosol. “Our choice of First Solar’s thin-film modules was based on a combination of cost-competitiveness, unrivalled bankability, the ability of its modules to reliably deliver solar power and the fact that the technology has the smallest carbon footprint, with the fastest energy payback time.”
Founded in 2008, Paris-based Photosol has developed solar power plants with a total capacity of 63MW across France and has a project pipeline that exceeds 250MW. Significantly, the four power plants are the largest ever undertaken by the company and also mark the first time it has partnered with First Solar.
“These projects are an excellent example of how France, like other parts of Europe, can diversify its power generation portfolio and achieve energy security by maximizing the use of available land and leveraging its most abundant energy resource – sunlight. We are proud to have been part of effort and look forward to continuing our partnership with Photosol and First Solar,” said Luis Pedro Marques, Managing Director of Jayme da Costa Energie.
“These projects collectively represent a significant boost to Photosol’s installed capacity as this young, dynamic company continues to build on its successes,” said Stefan Degener, First Solar’s Director of Business Development for Europe. “I would like to thank our partners at Photosol and Jayme da Costa for the trust they’ve placed in us; their decision to use our advanced thin-film modules is testament to the technology’s suitability to utility-scale solar power plants in a wide variety of conditions.”
First Solar has had a full-fledged European presence since 2004, and it continues to be a leading player in the region’s utility-scale PV market. As a result of this deal, the company’s installed capacity in Continental Europe now exceeds 4GW, equivalent to the electricity generated by approximately four nuclear power plants. Its modules power an estimated 1 million homes across the region, while displacing over 1.2 million metric tons of greenhouse gases, based on European Union averages, per year.
About First Solar, Inc.
First Solar is a leading global provider of comprehensive photovoltaic (PV) solar systems which use its advanced thin-film modules. 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.
Photosol, founded in 2008, is an independent renewable energy producer specialized in large photovoltaic (PV) power plants (between 8 to 12 MW each). The Company is present across the whole value chain as it develops, finances, builds and operates photovoltaic power plants in France. As of end of 2013, Photosol will have invested nearly €100 million, with 63MW of projects in operation and a pipeline of more than 250MW. In 2014 and 2015, Photosol is raising capital to invest an additional €100 million in the construction of new ready to build PV power plants. For more information, please visit www.photosol.fr.
About Jayme da Costa
Throughout its 96 years of activity, Jayme da Costa has become one of the most respected companies within the engineering area. Its achievements within the site civil, mechanical and electric installations, as well as the conception and the manufacturing of LV and MV electric equipment, have fostered its national and international recognition. Working in renewable energies projects since 1980’s across Europe, Africa and South America, Jayme da Costa Group and its regional branches has installed, participated and/or commissioned over 350 MW of Solar Power Plants, 3.5 GW of Wind Power and 300 MW of Small Hydro Power Stations.
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: 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, warranties, solar module efficiency and balance of systems (“BoS”) cost reduction roadmaps, restructuring, product reliability 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 photovoltaic (“PV”) solar power systems; research and development programs and our ability to improve the conversion efficiency of our solar modules; 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,” “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 Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2012, as updated and supplemented by risk factors included in our Prospectus dated June 12, 2013 filed with the SEC pursuant to Rule 424(b)(5) (the “Prospectus”), Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K and other reports filed with the SEC.