Oslo, July 17, 2007: Renewable Energy Corporation (REC) has decided to invest NOK 1,350 million to increase the monocrystaline wafer production capacity at the existing plant in Glomfjord, Norway from approximately 35 MW to more than 300 MW by 2010.
REC is well established as the world's leading supplier of multicrystalline wafers, but has a relatively limited monocrystalline activity at current. REC has now decided to invest approximately NOK 1,350 million to significantly expand the existing monocrystalline production plant in Glomfjord, Norway. The additional capacity of approximately 275 MW will bring the total annual production capacity of the plant to above 300 MW.
"With the increased focus on high-efficiency cells within both mono- and multicrystalline technologies, it becomes strategically important for us to build a strong position within both these technologies which collectively represent around 90% of the current solar market", says Erik Thorsen President & CEO.
The expansion project will also include necessary investments to ensure that REC takes the step from being a monocrystalline ingot producer, to a fully integrated manufacturer of monocrystalline wafers. The total number of employees at the plant will increase from approximately 70 to around 180.
"The move to in-house wafering of our monocrystalline material will enable us to capture more of the value creation and allow us to leverage on the unique and proprietary wafering concepts currently operating in our multicrystalline plants", Erik Thorsen continues.
The expansion will be executed in two steps. In the initial phase, approximately one third of the production equipment will be installed into the existing production facility, and the plant will simultaneously be extended. In the next phase, additional production equipment and REC's wafering concept will be installed into the new extended plant.
The ramp-up of the facility will reflect the two-step project execution. REC will consequently continue its monocrystalline ingot production until late 2008, when the fully integrated ingot and wafer production will be in operation. The first phase expansion will result in a doubling of the current capacity of 35 MW towards the end of 2008, whereas the second phase ramp-up during 2009 and the first half of 2010 will bring the capacity to more than 300 MW (references in MW based on 20 percent mono crystalline cell efficiency).
REC is uniquely positioned in the solar energy industry with a broad presence across the solar value chain. REC Silicon and REC Wafer are the world's largest producers of polysilicon and wafers for solar applications. REC Solar produces solar cells and solar modules. REC Group had revenues in 2006 of NOK 4,334 million and an operating profit of NOK 1,574 million. Please also see www.recgroup.com
For more information, please contact;
Erik Thorsen, President & CEO, +47 90 75 66 85
Jon Andre Løkke, SVP & Investor Relation Officer, +47 67 81 52 65