BREAKING: SolarWorld may close Oregon factory


Whatever criticisms that some in the industry have of SolarWorld, it is hard to say the the company is not transparent. Today, keeping in line with that the company’s U.S. subsidiary alerted the press that it had issued layoff notices through the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act to all of its employees.

WARN Act notices are required to be given by companies with more than 100 employees at least 60 days in advance of mass layoffs or plant closures. It is notable that a number of the other solar companies who recently had mass layoffs did not provide WARN Act notice to their employees.

SolarWorld could not confirm any additional details, such as whether the company’s ingot, cell and module would be downsized and remain open, or close. “We are trying to determine what is the right size for the organization going forwards,” SolarWorld Director of Strategic Affairs Ben Santarris told pv magazine.

As a direct subsidiary of Germany’s SolarWorld, SolarWorld Americas has been in trouble since the parent company filed for insolvency in German courts 12 days ago.

SolarWorld employs 800 workers in Oregon, and the company says that for the time being it is continuing production. The HIllsboro factory is the largest crystalline silicon manufacturing facility in the Western Hemisphere, with over 550 MW of annual module production capacity and 430 MW of cell capacity.

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