First solar to invest up to $1.2 billion in scaling

  • Announces intention to invest up to $1 billion in new 3.5 GWCC manufacturing facility in the southeastern United States
  • Northwest Ohio’s current footprint will be expanded by 0.9 GWCC with a $185 million upgrade
  • Plans to have more than 3,000 direct employees in four states, while supporting approximately 15,000 indirect and induced jobs by 2025

(PV) solar modules, directly supporting the country’s transition to a low-carbon future and enabling the fight against climate change. The investment is expected to expand the company’s ability to produce US-made solar modules for the US solar market to more than 10 gigawatts (GW)CC by 2025.

As part of its push to scale U.S. solar module production, the company intends to build its fourth fully vertically integrated domestic plant, with an annual capacity of 3.5 GW.CC, in the southeastern United States. First Solar, the only U.S.-based company among the world’s top ten solar manufacturers, plans to invest up to $1 billion in the new plant, which, subject to clearance and approval of various federal, state, regional and local incentives, is expected to start operations in 2025.

Additionally, the company will invest $185 million to upgrade and expand its manufacturing footprint in northwest Ohio, currently the largest vertically integrated facility of its kind in the Western Hemisphere, of 0.9GW.CC. As part of its plans, First Solar will invest in increasing the capacity of its two operating facilities in Perrysburg and Lake Township, Ohio, by 0.6 GWCC at 3.6GWCC of the annual capacity of Series 6 modules. The company will also expand its third plant in Ohio, which is expected to be commissioned in the first half of 2023, to 3.5 GWCC of 7-series module annual capacity. The expansion will increase First Solar’s total investment in its Ohio manufacturing facilities to more than $3 billion, with a cumulative annual production capacity of more than 7 GWCC by 2025.

First Solar estimates the new investment will create at least 850 new manufacturing jobs, bringing its total number of direct U.S. jobs to more than 3,000 people in four states by 2025, making it the most major employer in US solar manufacturing. sector. By 2025, First Solar is also expected to support approximately 15,000 indirect and induced jobs1 due to its current and future manufacturing operations.

“By passing the Cut Inflation Act of 2022, Congress and the Biden-Harris administration have given our industry the responsibility to enable America’s clean energy future and we must face it. at the time in a way that is both timely and sustainable,” said Mark Widmar. , CEO of First Solar. “This investment is an important step toward self-sufficiency in solar technology, which in turn supports America’s energy security ambitions, large-scale solar deployment, and ability to innovate. We are proud that our manufacturing presence in the United States is expected to directly and indirectly support more than 18,000 jobs across the country by 2025, while our manufacturing investment will add approximately $3.2 billion.2 in value to the US economy, reflecting the impact of solar manufacturing on our country. We are investing in America’s future.

In its last earnings call on July 28, 2022, First Solar announced a record backlog of 44.3 GWCC. The company has seen demand for its advanced thin-film photovoltaic solar modules boosted by its ability to provide customers and partners with long-term supply certainty, reduced political and compliance risk, and access to its best available technology. thanks to its agile contractual approach.

Widmar added: “While we have not made any decisions at this time, we continue to evaluate new investments in additional capacity and may announce further expansion plans in the future. Such a decision would be developed on a solid foundation of strong demand, a vertically repeatable integrated manufacturing model, a proven technology platform and a strong balance sheet.

Designed and developed at its R&D centers in California and Ohio, First Solar’s advanced thin-film photovoltaic modules set industry benchmarks for quality, durability, reliability, design and environmental performance. . Each module has a layer of cadmium telluride (CadTel) semiconductor that is only three percent the thickness of a human hair. Additionally, the company continues to optimize the amount of semiconductor material used by improving its vapor deposition process through continued R&D investments focused on more efficient module technology with a thinner semiconductor layer. First Solar also runs an advanced recycling program that provides closed-loop recovery of semiconductors for use in new modules.

In addition to its manufacturing facilities in Ohio, First Solar also operates factories in Vietnam and Malaysia, and is building its first new manufacturing facility in India, which is expected to start operations in the second half of 2023. Upon completion of its expansion plans in the United States and India, the company plans to have more than 20 GWCC of annual global manufacturing capacity in 2025.

About First Solar, Inc.
First Solar is a leading American solar technology company and global supplier of responsibly produced, eco-efficient solar modules to advance the fight against climate change. Developed in R&D labs in California and Ohio, the company’s advanced thin-film PV modules represent the next generation of solar technologies, providing a competitive, high-performance, low-carbon alternative to conventional PV modules in crystalline silicon. From sourcing and manufacturing raw materials to recycling end-of-life modules, First Solar’s technology approach embodies sustainability and responsibility to people and the planet. For more information, visit www.firstsolar.com.

For early solar investors
This press release contains various “forward-looking statements” that are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding our plans to invest up to $1.2 billion in large-scale production of our locally and responsibly manufactured solar photovoltaic modules; our expectation that this investment will expand our ability to produce US-made solar modules for the US solar market to more than 10 GWCC by 2025; our intention to build our fourth fully integrated national plant, with an annual capacity of 3.5 GWCC, in the southeastern United States; our expectation to invest up to $1 billion in the new plant and begin operations in 2025; our plan to invest $185 million in upgrading and expanding our manufacturing footprint in Northwest Ohio by 0.9 GWCCwhich includes increasing the capacity of our two existing facilities to 3.6 GWCC of the annual capacity of the 6-Series modules and the expansion of our new factory in Ohio to 3.5 GWCC the annual capacity of the 7 series modules; our expectation that our total investment in our Ohio manufacturing facilities will exceed $3 billion and result in a cumulative annual production capacity of more than 7 GWCC by 2025; our estimate that the new investment will create at least 850 new manufacturing jobs, bringing our total number of direct US jobs to more than 3,000 people in four states by 2025; our belief that this will make us the largest employer in the US solar manufacturing industry; our expectation to support approximately 15,000 indirect and induced jobs in the United States by 2025; our expectation that our manufacturing investment will add an estimated $3.2 billion in economic value by 2025; our plans to establish a new manufacturing facility in India and the date on which the facility is expected to commence operations; our expectation of having more than 20 GWCC annual global manufacturing capacity by 2025; and our potential plans to announce further expansion in the future. These forward-looking statements are often characterized by the use of words such as “estimate”, “expect”, “anticipate”, “project”, “plan”, “intend”, “seek”, ” believe”, “plan”, “plan”, “probable”, “may”, “should”, “goal”, “target”, “could”, “should”, “could”, “predict”, “continue” and the negative or the plural of these words and other comparable terms. Forward-looking statements are only predictions based on First Solar’s current expectations and First Solar’s projections about future events and therefore speak only as of the date of this release. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. First Solar undertakes no obligation to update any of these forward-looking statements for any reason, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause First Solar’s 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, matters discussed under the “Risk Factors” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” sections of our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and of our quarterly report subsequently filed. Reports on Form 10-Q, supplemented by our other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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1 Assuming five workers were added across the US economy for every manufacturing job (Source: National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), using IMPLAN 2020 data)
2 Assuming an economic impact multiplier of $2.68 per $1.00 spent on manufacturing (Source: NAM, using IMPLAN 2020 data)

Photos accompanying this announcement are available at:

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Photos are also available through AP PhotoExpress.