First Solar Reports Net Loss of $43.25 Million in Q1 2022 Amid Dip in Module Sales

U.S.-based solar modules manufacturer First Solar has recorded a net loss of $43.25 million in the first quarter (Q1) of 2022 representing a quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) decline of 67.07% compared to the net profit of $131.37 million registered in the previous quarter. The company recorded a 79.37% year-on-year (YoY) decrease from $209.67 million recorded in Q1 2021.

The firm’s net sales in Q1 2021 stood at $367.04 million, 59.54%, down from $907.31 million in Q4 2021. In a YoY comparison, net sales were down 54.31% from $803.37 million in Q1 2021. Net sales were down due to a decrease in module sales volume, a decrease in the module average selling price, and lower project revenue in Japan.

                                                                                                          Source: First Solar

Cash, restricted cash, and marketable securities at the end of Q1 2022 decreased to $1.6 billion from $1.8 billion at the end of the prior quarter. The decrease was primarily a result of capital expenditures related to expansion in India and Ohio and operating expenses. The company has announced plans to manufacture next-generation series 7 modules in India and Ohio.

But the company had a record year-to-date net booking of 16.7 GW in Q1 2022. The company manufactured 2.1 GW of solar modules during the quarter and had shipments of 1.7 GW.

“We are encouraged by our strong bookings progress, as we booked 11.9 GWDC in less than 60 days since the prior earnings call, bringing our year-to-date bookings total to 16.7 GWDC, further setting ourselves up for 2023 and beyond,” said Mark Widmar, CEO of First Solar.

Potential Booking Oppurtunities

                                                                                                           Source: First Solar

In June 2021, First Solar announced that it would invest $684 million to set up a 3.3 GW vertically-integrated thin-film solar module manufacturing facility in India. First Solar produces thin-film solar panel modules that do not use polysilicon. India is the second-largest market for the company after North America.

The U.S. International Development Finance Corporation had approved $500 million of debt financing to First Solar to set up the vertically integrated solar module manufacturing facility in Tamil Nadu.