Tags: First | Solar | Sales | Profit

First Solar Cuts Sales, Profit Guidance in Reorganization

Wednesday, 14 Dec 2011 09:11 AM

First Solar Inc. on Wednesday cut its earnings and revenue estimates for 2011 due to weather delays and other unspecified issues with some company projects.

The Tempe, Ariz. solar manufacturer said it expects to earn between $5.75 and $6 per share on revenue of $2.8 billion to $2.9 billion in 2011. That's down from an already reduced estimate of earnings of $6.50 to $7.50 per share on revenue of $3 billion to $3.3 billion.

Shares plunged $5.58, or 13.1 percent, to $36.95 in premarket trading. Analysts were expecting earnings of $6.92 per share on revenue of $3.19 billion.

First Solar cut earnings estimates two months ago after announcing that former CEO Rob Gillette was leaving. Analysts have expected weaker financial results this year from most solar companies. The industry has been hit hard by slower economic growth around the world, including the U.S., where government funding has been squeezed for alternative energy projects.

First Solar, the nation's largest solar company, is also facing competition from a growing number of Chinese companies.

In addition to its reduced 2011 earnings guidance, First Solar expects to report charges of 85 cents per share related to a series of cost-cutting moves this year, including the layoffs of about 100 people. Most of those charges will be incurred in the fourth quarter.

For 2012, First Solar expects to earn between $3.75 and $4.25 per share on revenue of $3.7 billion to $4 billion. It also estimates cash flow at between $900 million and $1.1 billion. The company plans to spend between $375 million and $425 million on capital investments.

Wall Street is looking for earnings of $7.26 per share on revenue of $4.07 billion next year.

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First Solar Inc. on Wednesday cut its earnings and revenue estimates for 2011 due to weather delays and other unspecified issues with some company projects. The Tempe, Ariz. solar manufacturer said it expects to earn between $5.75 and $6 per share on revenue of $2.8...
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2011-11-14
Wednesday, 14 Dec 2011 09:11 AM
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