Meyer Burger Technology, a Swiss photovoltaic company, has announced plans to close one of its German sites in order to cut losses and concentrate on expanding its operations in the United States. The move comes as European renewables companies are increasingly drawn to the American market due to favorable government incentives.
As a result of this news, shares of Meyer Burger Technology plummeted by 33% to CHF0.09 at 1232 GMT on Wednesday, reaching their lowest point since March 2020, during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the past year, the company's shares have dropped by a staggering 86%.
The manufacturing firm, known for its production of solar cells and modules, explained that it is exploring various funding options while preparing to shut down its production site in Freiberg, Germany. This decision will affect approximately 500 jobs. The final verdict on the site closure is expected to be made in the second half of February, and if approved, the closure may take place as early as April.
Meyer Burger Technology attributed this strategic shift to the challenging market conditions currently faced by solar manufacturing in Europe. In light of this, the company aims to redirect its focus towards expanding its presence in the United States, where it foresees a more promising market landscape with supportive government programs, such as the Inflation Reduction Act. It should be noted that other European sites operated by the company will remain unaffected.
Closing out 2023 with a cash position of 150 million Swiss francs ($174.1 million), Meyer Burger Technology estimates that it will require approximately CHF450 million in funding until it begins generating positive cash flows and ramps up its U.S. operations. The company is exploring various funding options, including equity-based funding through rights issues or private placings.
Looking ahead to 2023, Meyer Burger Technology anticipates a loss before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization of at least CHF126 million, with sales projected to be around CHF135 million.