Solar manufacturer Meyer Burger is looking to expand its capacity in Europe on a gigawatt scale. This month, it applied to the EU's Innovation Fund for funding in the three-digit million range, the company announced Thursday. It said the project would involve the production of both solar cells and solar modules in several European countries. More details on possible locations were not provided when asked. A decision is expected in the summer, it said.
Meyer Burger, based in Thun, Switzerland, operates production facilities in Germany in Thalheim (Saxony-Anhalt) as well as Freiberg and Hohenstein-Ernstthal (Saxony). In addition, module production is to be set up in Goodyear in the USA, and the cells for this are to be manufactured in Thalheim. And this will be on a larger scale than previously planned. According to the company, the capacity of the US plant will be 2.0 gigawatts instead of 1.6 gigawatts, which is larger than previously planned. This will require significant investment in new facilities in Thalheim, it said. The investments are to be financed largely by advance payments from customers with whom purchase agreements have been concluded over several years.
In Freiberg, Meyer Burger produced 830,000 solar modules last year with an output of around 321 megawatts. The cells come from Thalheim, a district of Bitterfeld-Wolfen. The further ramp-up of production is ongoing. This year, the company plans to produce modules with a total output of around 800 megawatts. Last year, about 400 new employees were hired at the German sites, he said.
The publicly traded company is undergoing a transformation from a machine builder to a solar manufacturer. Sales have more than tripled in 2022, according to the data: from 39.9 million Swiss francs to 147.2 million (147.7 million euros). At the same time, the loss has decreased: the net result was reported at minus 69.9 million Swiss francs (2021: -100.5 million).
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