pv magazine USA recaps the top earnings reports and conference calls for public companies that supply solar modules, silicon wafer materials, inverters, hardware and energy storage systems to the North American renewable energy market, as well as integrated residential solar installation companies and rooftop solar finance providers. This report tracks quarterly and annual volumes of orders, wafer material shipments and customer allocations.
In Q1 2023, U.S. solar companies increasingly incorporated energy storage into their product solutions as well as virtual power plant networked offerings, in response to policy events such as California’s Net Energy Metering 3.0 framework taking effect in April of 2023, and grid resiliency efforts tied to climate change.
SunPower, a residential solar and energy services provider, recorded a net loss in Q1 2023 of $51 million, compared to a net loss of $2 million in the same quarter a year ago. The company’s lower 14.5% gross margin showed a higher cost profile that outweighed a higher revenue production quarter of $441 million, a 26% increase year-over-year. The company said it was affected by adverse weather conditions in California, which “increased costs and delayed certain installations.”
In Q1 2023, the residential solar company had increased cost of sales of $376.8 million, representing a 36% year-over-year increase from $277.9 of costs in the prior year’s quarter.
SunPower recorded gross margin erosion despite adding a higher customer account in the quarter of 21k customers, representing annual growth of 27% compared to 16.5k customers added a year ago.
“We exited Q1 with high customer growth, significant new financing commitments, and unprecedented retrofit backlog driven by our efforts securing customers under NEM 2.0,” said Peter Faricy, chief executive officer, SunPower. “This progress, despite challenging weather in California, validates the strength of the residential solar market and SunPower’s ability to capture growing demand.”
SunPower reported a $116.5 million cash balance at quarter end, down from $142.3 million a year ago.
- In 2023 to date, SunPower has financing commitments from HASI, Credit Agricole CIB and credit funds of by KKR & Co. to fund a total of $1 billion of incremental solar loans for its customers. With the non-recourse credit funds, SunPower Financial will continue to provide customers with loan options for the transition to clean energy.
- In April, SunPower and OhmConnect announced a virtual power plant (VPP) offering. Eligible California homeowners with solar and SunVault batteries can connect with OhmConnect through the mySunPower app to dispatch excess stored energy at daily intervals. Participants can earn rewards while stabilizing the grid, while reserving a set amount of energy to meet home energy needs.
- Finalized an investment in Minnesota-based Wolf River Electric through its Dealer Accelerator Program. Wolf River, the company’s newest and now third-largest dealer, gives SunPower additional growth in the Midwest states of Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa.
SunPower’s stock traded down 6% today, to $11.80 per share from $12.54 before it reporting earnings, based on the earnings miss.
Sunrun, a San Francisco-based residential solar company, posted $589.8 million in Q1 2023 revenue, up 19% from $495.8 million a year ago. The company posted 14% higher sales than market consensus estimates as the company installed 240 MW of systems in Q1 2023, up 13% from 213 MW installed a year ago.
As of March 31, 2023, Sunrun had 829k customers, including 692k subscribers, representing 20% year-over-year growth.
Management said it expects the company’s installed growth to be 10% to 15% in 2023. In the near-term the company expects solar installed capacity growth of 270 MW to 290 MW in Q2 2023.
As of March 31, Sunrun had a cash balance of $843.2 million as well as $522 million available borrowings of a $1.8 billion non-recourse revolving warehouse credit facility to fund over 175 MW of solar subscription installations.
- On April 12, launched Sunrun Shift, a home solar subscription offering that maximizes the value of solar energy under California’s new Net Energy Metering 3.0 solar policy. By storing self-generated solar energy throughout the day, Shift optimizes potential customer savings of going solar by increasing self-consumption during peak hours when rates are highest and reducing low-value exports back to the grid from storage.
- On February 6, Sunrun and PG&E announced a residential virtual power plant to support grid reliability. Through the Energy Efficiency Summer Reliability Program, Sunrun will enroll up to 7,500 new and existing home solar and storage systems in PG&E service territory, creating a VPP capable of discharging 30 MW of clean energy back to the grid.
- Back-up power partnership with Ford continues to deliver strong initial results; with over 2,000 Ford Charge Station Pro orders received thus far. About half of such customers are purchasing bidirectional home backup capability.
SolarEdge Technologies, a supplier of microinverters and energy storage systems, posted strong Q1 2023 revenue of $943.9 million, representing a 44% year-over-year increase from $655.1 million of revenue posted a year ago. The company beat the market consensus of $933 million revenue forecasted for the quarter.
The energy technology company shipped 3.6 GW(AC) of inverters and 221 MWh of batteries in the recent quarter, a 69% increase over 2.13 GW of inverters shipped a year ago.
“Our diverse geographic and segmental footprint enables us to continue to grow revenues without being overly dependent on any single market or segment,” said Zvi Lando, chief executive officer, SolarEdge. “As we see supply chain challenges gradually improving, we remain focused on execution and efficiencies to drive up margins and profitability.”
In Q2 2023, the company expects revenue of $970 million to $1.01 billion.
As of March 31, SolarEdge had a $727.8 million cash balance, down 27.3% from $1 billion a year ago.
- In February, SolarEdge entered a multi-year agreement with Freedom Forever, a residential solar installer, for the supply of residential smart energy products using SolarEdge inverter, home energy management systems and batteries.
- Launched battery virtual power plant with National Grid ESO demand flexibility Service in the utility’s UK region. The service is available to SolarEdge home battery owners with smart meters, now able to earn financial incentives during daily peak demand events.
- In January, Energy Storage division began shipping new battery cells for stationary Energy Storage applications. Its new line of nickel manganese cobalt (NMC) pouch cells, manufactured at its Sella 2 facility in South Korea, has been optimized for energy storage applications for the residential, commercial and utility scale segments.
SolarEdge’s stock traded up to $299.24 per share today, up 14.8% from $260.56 per share before reporting Q1 2023 earnings, based on the market beat.
- ESS Tech Inc. reports Q1 2023 earnings on May 9, with a conference call scheduled for 4:30 p.m. ET.
- Eos Energy Enterprises reports Q1 2023 earnings on May 9, with a conference call scheduled for May 10 at 8:30 a.m. ET.
- Fluence Energy reports its Q2 2023 earnings on May 10, which represents its fiscal quarter ending March 31, 2023. The C&I energy storage developer will host a listen-only Q2 2023 conference call on May 11 at 8:30 a.m. ET.
- Canadian Solar reports Q1 2023 earnings on May 18, with a conference call scheduled for 8:30 a.m. ET; access to the call is available by calling 877-704-4453.
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