Hanergy posts strong H1 results

Hanergy Thin Film Power’s profit rose approximately 20% on the year to HK$1.73bn ($223.2m) in the first half of 2014, supported by strong sales of its thin-film PV production equipment.

The company — formerly known as Hanergy Solar — said its gross profit jumped 63% on the year to HK$2.74bn in the six months to 30 June, 2014. Its operating revenue rose 53% from the same period a year earlier to HK$3.2bn, according to a statement on the Hong Kong stock exchange.

The thin-film PV module and production equipment manufacturer — which is increasingly moving into downstream solar development — has led China’s major solar OEMs in pursuing overseas acquisitions in recent years.

Its purchases include thin-film producers MiaSolé and Global Solar Energy, as well as Solibro, a former Q-Cells subsidiary. Most recently, it snapped up US thin-film purveyor Alta Devices.

Beijing-based Hanergy started expanding into the downstream PV sector last year, when it began developing a 100MW project in China’s Qinghai province. It is currently building nine projects, with eight PV plants already connected to the grid in China.

Earlier this year, the group secured the rights to build a 50MW PV plant in Xuchang, in China’s Henan province.

It said that in the first half of 2014, one of its subsidiaries agreed to develop 10MW of distributed-generation solar capacity, most of it on top of automaker FAW-Volkswagen’s factories in Foshan, in China’s Guangdong province.

And in May, another Hanergy subsidiary signed up to construct 17MW of solar on top of automaker Guangqi Honda’s plants in the city of Guangzhou, Guangdong.

It said it is optimistic about the outlook for distributed-generation solar in China, noting the importance of such projects in the government's ambitious installation target for 2014, as well as the introduction of provincial-level subsidies throughout the country.

The group said it continues to seek “opportunities to cooperate with large companies in order to increase (its) market share of distributed power projects and capture potential business opportunities in the downstream business sector.”

It also praised recent efforts by the National Energy Administration (NEA) and the People’s Bank of China to help developers secure financing, which is one of several obstacles weighing on the development of distributed-generation PV in China.

The group’s downstream ambitions also extend beyond its home market.

Last October, it acquired a US company that is developing a 19MW project in California, scheduled for completion this November.

And in April of this year, it acquired a 70% stake in Savanna Solar, which is planning a 400MW solar plant in Ghana’s Northern Region.

The project — Hanergy’s first in Africa — will be constructed in three phases, starting with 100MW each in the first two years of development and 200MW in the third.