Chinese Solar Company Headed to the NYSE

Catching in on two booms – the boom in Chinese firms headed to the US stock exchanges, and the boom in solar IPOs, Suntech Power, has filed to list on Nasdaq.

They are raising $300 mm in ADRs, and reporting revenues of the last 9 months of $137 mm 13% profit. That puts them in the top 10 in solar production worldwide.

SEC filings

A couple of interesting comments:

  • It’s mostly export business, with Chinese solar sales maybe a fifth of total. So while the Chinese domestic solar business is growing, and solar is a part of the future power mix China is trying to build, the market there is still extremely small.
  • The firm is less than 5 years old, and has grown extremely rapidly. I have been espousing the danger the US and European solar manufacturers are facing from the major Japanese competitors for some time. Now it looks like we have to add Chinese manufacturers to the list.
  • The company was profitable at c. 25 MW/year of annual capacity. That is a lower volume breakeven than most the US firms have been able to achieve.

The long and the short of it is Suntech looks like a company to keep an eye on whether you are an investor looking to get in on the IPO, or a competitor trying to watch the fast changing market dynamics.

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