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First Solar, Inc. Announces First Quarter 2014 Financial Results

May 06, 2014

  • Net sales of $950 million
  • GAAP earnings per fully diluted share of $1.10
  • Cash and Marketable Securities of $1.4 billion, Net Cash of $1.2 billion
  • Increased 2014 guidance for EPS and operating cash flow

TEMPE, Ariz.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- First Solar, Inc. (Nasdaq: FSLR) today announced financial results for the first quarter of 2014. Net sales were $950 million in the quarter, an increase of $182 million from the fourth quarter of 2013. The sequential increase in net sales is primarily attributable to achieving revenue recognition on our Campo Verde project.

The Company reported first quarter GAAP net income per fully diluted share of $1.10, compared to $0.64 in the prior quarter. The increase in net income compared to the prior quarter was primarily due to higher net sales, project cost improvements, and lower restructuring and asset impairment charges.

Cash and Marketable Securities at the end of the first quarter were approximately $1.4 billion, a decrease of approximately $385 million compared to the end of the fourth quarter of 2013. Cash flows used in operations were $318 million in the first quarter. The use of cash in the quarter is primarily related to ongoing construction of projects which have not yet been sold.

Based on the results of the first quarter the Company is increasing full-year 2014 guidance as follows:

  • Gross Margin percentage of 17-18%, compared to prior guidance of 16-18%
  • Operating Income of $290 to $340 million, compared to prior guidance of $270 to $320 million
  • Earnings per fully diluted share guidance of $2.40 to $2.80, compared to prior guidance of $2.20 to $2.60
  • Operating cash flow guidance of $300 - $500 million, compared to prior guidance of $250 - $450 million

"In the first quarter we demonstrated significant progress towards achieving the financial and operational targets we outlined at our recent Analyst Day," said Jim Hughes, CEO of First Solar. "We delivered strong earnings in the first quarter and are increasing our financial guidance for the year based on these results. We have also made significant progress in new bookings and continue to execute on our technology roadmap."

First Solar has scheduled a conference call for today, May 6, 2014 at 4:30 p.m. ET to discuss this announcement. Investors may access a live webcast of this conference call by visiting

An audio replay of the conference call will also be available approximately two hours after the conclusion of the call. The audio replay will remain available until Monday, May 12, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. ET and can be accessed by dialing 888-203-1112 if you are calling from within the United States or 719-457-0820 if you are calling from outside the United States and entering the replay pass code 1522767. A replay of the webcast will be available on the Investors section of the Company's web site approximately two hours after the conclusion of the call and remain available for approximately 90 calendar days.

About First Solar, Inc.

First Solar is a leading global provider of comprehensive photovoltaic (PV) solar systems which use its advanced module and system technology. The company's integrated power plant solutions deliver an economically attractive alternative to fossil-fuel electricity generation today. From raw material sourcing through end-of-life module recycling, First Solar's renewable energy systems protect and enhance the environment. For more information about First Solar, please visit

For First Solar Investors

This release contains forward-looking statements which are made pursuant to safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements include statements, among other things, concerning: our business strategy, including anticipated trends and developments in and management plans for our business and the markets in which we operate; future financial results, operating results, revenues, gross margin, operating expenses, products, projected costs, warranties, solar module efficiency and balance of systems ("BoS") cost reduction roadmaps, restructuring, product reliability and capital expenditures; our ability to continue to reduce the cost per watt of our solar modules; our ability to reduce the costs to construct photovoltaic ("PV") solar power systems; research and development programs and our ability to improve the conversion efficiency of our solar modules; sales and marketing initiatives; and competition. These forward-looking statements are often characterized by the use of words such as "estimate," "expect," "anticipate," "project," "plan," "intend," "believe," "forecast," "foresee," "likely," "may," "should," "goal," "target," "might," "will," "could," "predict," "continue" and the negative or plural of these words and other comparable terminology. Forward-looking statements are only predictions based on our current expectations and our projections about future events. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. We undertake no obligation to update any of these forward-looking statements for any reason. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors that may cause our actual results, levels of activity, performance, or achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these statements. These factors include, but are not limited to, the matters discussed in Item 1A: "Risk Factors," of our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2013, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K and other reports filed with the SEC.




(In thousands, except share data)






March 31,

December 31,

Current assets:
Cash and cash equivalents $ 975,194 $ 1,325,072
Marketable securities 404,033 439,102
Accounts receivable trade, net 233,761 136,383
Accounts receivable, unbilled and retainage 532,151 521,323
Inventories 387,050 388,951
Balance of systems parts 82,563 133,731
Deferred project costs 233,075 556,957
Deferred tax assets, net 64,622 63,899
Assets held for sale 20,748 132,626
Prepaid expenses and other current assets 102,840   94,720  
Total current assets 3,036,037   3,792,764  
Property, plant and equipment, net 1,370,537 1,385,084
Project assets and deferred project costs 1,022,105 720,916
Deferred tax assets, net 233,172 296,603
Restricted cash and investments 304,757 279,441
Goodwill 84,985 84,985
Other intangible assets, net 117,117 117,416
Inventories 128,129 129,664
Other assets 79,514   76,629  
Total assets $ 6,376,353   $ 6,883,502  
Current liabilities:
Accounts payable $ 186,278 $ 261,333
Income taxes payable 6,638 6,707
Accrued expenses 321,339 320,077
Current portion of long-term debt 60,656 60,543
Payments and billings for deferred project costs 229,530 642,214
Other current liabilities 193,493   297,187  
Total current liabilities 997,934   1,588,061  
Accrued solar module collection and recycling liability 241,390 225,163
Long-term debt 138,229 162,780
Other liabilities 365,411   404,381  
Total liabilities 1,742,964   2,380,385  
Commitments and contingencies
Stockholders' equity:
Common stock, $0.001 par value per share; 500,000,000 shares authorized; 100,094,905 and 99,506,941 shares issued and outstanding at March 31, 2014 and December 31, 2013, respectively 100 100
Additional paid-in capital 2,646,395 2,646,022
Accumulated earnings 1,994,779 1,882,771
Accumulated other comprehensive loss (7,885 ) (25,776 )
Total stockholders' equity 4,633,389   4,503,117  
Total liabilities and stockholders' equity $ 6,376,353   $ 6,883,502  



(In thousands, except per share amounts)




Three Months Ended
March 31,


2014     2013
Net sales $ 950,158 $ 755,205
Cost of sales 713,447   585,879  
Gross profit 236,711 169,326
Operating expenses:
Research and development 38,773 29,931
Selling, general and administrative 58,664 74,465
Production start-up 1,376
Restructuring and asset impairments   2,347  
Total operating expenses 97,437   108,119  
Operating income 139,274 61,207
Foreign currency (loss) gain (579 ) 1,618
Interest income 4,321 4,947
Interest expense, net (410 ) (750 )
Other income, net (1,746 ) (833 )
Income before income taxes 140,860 66,189
Income tax expense 28,853     7,047  
Net income $ 112,007   59,142  
Net income per share:
Basic $ 1.12   $ 0.68  
Diluted $ 1.10   $ 0.66  
Weighted-average number of shares used in per share calculations:
Basic 99,591   87,206  
Diluted 101,822   89,377  

First Solar Investors
David Brady
+1 602-414-9315
Steve Haymore
+1 602-414-9315
First Solar Media
Steve Krum
+1 602-427-3359

Source: First Solar, Inc.

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