Meyer Burger seeks partners for profitable growth

17 January 2024 15:01

Greater Geneva BernSwiss AMCHAM SoCal

Thun - Meyer Burger anticipates a loss of at least 126 million Swiss francs on sales of 135 million in 2023. The solar manufacturer has announced the closure of its Freiberg site in the German state of Saxony and is looking for partners for profitable growth in America.

Meyer Burger is suffering from protectionism. The solar manufacturer based in Thun in the canton of Bern has announced that it anticipates an operating result (EBITDA) loss of at least 126 million Swiss francs for 2023. Turnover amounted to 135 million francs. The largest Swiss solar manufacturer blamed this result on the increase in solar production in China and trade restrictions in India and the USA.

Meyer Burger expects to have to close its plant in Freiberg in the German state of Saxony as early as April. The closure of Europe's largest solar module factory would affect 500 employees, though the company intends to offer some of them employment at other plants. Meyer Burger is still in talks with the German Ministry of Economic Affairs.

Mechanical engineering and research and development in Germany and Switzerland are not affected, and the production of solar cells in Thalheim in Saxony-Anhalt will also continue. This will support the boost to production in Goodyear in the US state of Arizona, where the production of modules is scheduled to start in the second quarter. Meyer Burger is also analyzing strategic options to secure its own profitable growth. The company has commissioned an investment bank to support the process.

“In the U.S., we can take full advantage of our leading technology position, resulting in substantial interest by partners and supported by favourable industry policies,” commented CEO Gunter Erfurt in the statement. An order book there already totalling 5.4 gigawatts will generate a potential EBIDTA of roughly 250 million Swiss francs in 2026, he said. ce/stk

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