Shareholders of Shunfeng have approved the company’s 3bn yuan ($480m) takeover of Wuxi Suntech, formally opening a new chapter for what was until recently the manufacturing arm of the world’s largest PV company.
Shunfeng’s winning bid for Wuxi Suntech was accepted by the administrator in Wuxi, Jiangsu province, last November, following the company’s push into bankruptcy a year ago.
Since then, a number of potential roadblocks have cropped up, including various legal challenges from Suntech Power Holdings, which disputes the validity of some of the outcomes of Wuxi Suntech’s bankruptcy and subsequent restructuring.
After today’s vote, held at an extraordinary general meeting, the focus for Shunfeng will shift in new directions – including raising money for the 3GW of PV capacity it intends to take on line this year in China.
Roughly half of Shunfeng’s shareholders eligible to vote did so, and support for the Wuxi Suntech acquisition was unanimous among those that did cast a ballot, Shunfeng says.
Speaking recently to Recharge, Eric Luo, Wuxi Suntech’s new chief executive (and the former supply chain head at Suntech Power), explained that Wuxi Suntech will sell as many modules in overseas markets as possible – with Shunfeng effectively acting as a buyer of last resort.
Wuxi Suntech may add as much as 1GW of capacity this year, Luo says, with Shunfeng having pledged to plough significant money into the company’s reboot, in spite of the 8bn yuan capital shortfall it faces if it is to meet its installation target for this year.
It remains to be seen whether the finalisation of Shunfeng’s acquisition will extinguish the various legal battles brought against Wuxi Suntech by its former parent company.
Late last month Shunfeng informed its shareholders that Wuxi Suntech had quietly sold Suntech Singapore – which it gained control of during its insolvency proceedings – for $1 to an unknown company known as Fast Fame Global Limited.
The merits of owning Suntech Singapore were spoiled earlier this year, when a Singapore court ruled that the unit owned Suntech Power $264m.