Vermont-based iSun reported a net loss of $3.1 million, or ($0.41) per share during the first quarter of 2021. That compared to a net loss of $0.8 million, or ($0.15) per share in first quarter of 2020.
It reported first quarter 2021 EBITDA of ($1.4) million, compared to ($0.34) million during the same quarter a year earlier. It said the year-over-year decline in EBITDA was due largely to higher general and administrative expenses and lower gross profit due to the impacts of Covid-19-related shutdowns and higher-than-expected costs on certain projects in progress.
The company expanded its geographic range during the quarter with a $25 million micro-grid solar project in Tennessee, the company’s largest to date. It also entered the utility-scale solar market with its acquisition of OCS in April.
The company reported revenue of $7.3 million in the first quarter 2021, an increase of 82.2% compared to the first quarter of 2020. Revenue growth was driven by project awards in the second half of 2020 and in early 2021, including multiple projects in new regions and the continued ease of pandemic-related restrictions in key service areas.
Gross profit was $0.1 million in the first quarter 2021, compared to $0.3 million a year earlier. Gross margin during the quarter was 1.6%, compared to 7.9% in the first quarter of 2020.
The company said that the lower gross margin was mainly due to several Covid-19 related project shutdowns which drove higher costs and impacted productivity.
The gross margin in the first quarter also was impacted by what the company described as a “significant material issue” on
one of its out-of-state projects. Material that did not meet the design requirements were delivered to the job site. The company’s quality control team identified the issue at inspection and notified its procurement group. That group found replacement material that did not require a change to the design, but did require material modification on already installed equipment. The change resulted in additional material handling expense, material modification expense, and labor expense.
The company said that due to the nature of the material issue, it had to make the necessary changes without additional revenue to offset the unplanned expenses.
The operating loss was ($2.6) million in the first quarter, compared to ($0.5) million in the same period of 2020. The company said the year-over-decline was mainly due to lower gross profit and higher general and administrative costs related to the iSun, LLC acquisition, and to fund growth.
Total backlog rose to $81 million at end of first quarter of 2021, versus $61 million and $41 million at the end of the fourth quarter of 2020 and the first quarter of 2020, respectively.
In March, iSun made a $1.5 million strategic investment in Gemini Electric Mobility Co., an electric vehicle and charging company for the gig-driver, and a $1.0 million strategic investment in Nad Grid Corp., an electric vehicle software and network provider. These investments are expected to drive incremental demand for iSun’s Energy & Mobility Hub.
In April, iSun acquired all of the intellectual property of Oakwood Construction Services, a utility-scale solar EPC company, and its affiliates. Total consideration was $2.7 million, with $1.0 million due immediately and the remaining $1.7 million contingent upon certain milestones, which have not yet been met.
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