New markets leave SolarOne upbeat for 2013

PV manufacturer Hanwha SolarOne gave an upbeat view for 2013, when it says shipments could almost double from last year’s level.

Hanwha SolarOne – which is based in Shanghai, China, but part of the Seoul-based Hanwha Corporation, is forecasting module shipments of 1.3-1.5GW this year, including processing services.

That compares with the 830MW it managed last year and 844MW in 2011.

CEO Ki-Joon Hong said factors pointing to a better 2013 include good visibility on sales in South Africa and Japan “for the first half of this year in particular.”

SolarOne continues to “see growing opportunities in China, the US, the Middle East and other emerging markets of importance,” he adds.

The SolarOne boss also expects to exploit potential synergies with Q-Cells, the German PV company its parent group acquired last year, and said “industry prices seem to have stabilised.”

There are no short-term plans to add to the company’s 1.5GW of module production capacity.

Hong’s perkier view of the year ahead follows a 2012 during which he said “all companies, including ours, found it virtually impossible to record profitability in such an operating environment” – naming the now-familiar culprits of overcapacity and price declines.

Hanwha SolarOne’s net loss grew to 1.56bn yuan ($251m) in 2012 from 930m yuan a year earlier.