First Solar (FSLR) Makes Big Push Into French Market With EDF Partnership

First Solar (FSLR) is entering the French market with a splash, announcing this morning a partnership with French utility EDF Energies Nouvelles to build France’s largest solar panel manufacturing plant with annual capacity of more than 100MW of thin film panels. 

EDF will finance half of the $126 million cost of the plant in exchange for the plant’s output for the next 10 years.  Now that’s what I call locking up supply!  No site has been selected, but an announcement is expected at the site location within a couple months.

This is big news for First Solar and for France who is an increasingly important player in the solar space. 

Mike Ahearn, CEO of First Solar, said, “The decision to invest in France reflects our firm belief in the French market and its great potential. It represents a vote of confidence in the policies being developed by the French government since the Grenelle de l’Environnement to promote renewable energies and allow solar electricity to compete economically with other forms of energy. The long-term commitments of the French Government to provide the policy and regulatory frameworks that enable robust solar markets and of EDF EN to invest in developing and expanding the French market were key factors in our decision to invest in France.”


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