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First Solar, Inc. Announces Third Quarter 2022 Financial Results

October 27, 2022
  • Net sales of $629 million
  • Net loss per diluted share of $0.46
  • Cash, cash equivalents, restricted cash, and marketable securities of $1.9 billion
  • YTD net bookings of 43.7 GW DC
  • 16.6 GW DC of net bookings since prior earnings call
  • Record expected module shipment backlog of over 58 GW DC
  • Reduce FY 2022 earnings guidance primarily to reflect unforeseen logistics costs

TEMPE, Ariz., Oct. 27, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- First Solar, Inc. (Nasdaq: FSLR) today announced financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2022.

Net sales for the third quarter were $629 million, an increase of $8 million from the prior quarter, primarily due to increased module sales.

Operating loss for the third quarter was $68 million, compared to operating income of $145 million in the prior quarter. Third quarter operating income decreased primarily due to a gain on the sale of the Company’s Japan project development platform recorded in the prior quarter and higher logistics charges in the third quarter.

The Company reported a third quarter loss per diluted share of $0.46, compared to income per diluted share of $0.52 in the prior quarter.

Cash, cash equivalents, restricted cash, and marketable securities at the end of the third quarter remained at $1.9 billion, consistent with the prior quarter. Capital expenditures for Series 7 expansions were funded by operating cash flows and disbursements under the Company’s credit facility with the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation supporting the financing of the India manufacturing plant.

“Our focus continues to be on setting the stage for long-term growth, and from this point of view, 2022 has so far proven to be foundational,” said Mark Widmar, CEO of First Solar. “This year we have developed the potential for our CdTe semiconductor technology by progressing our next-generation Series 7 and bifacial platforms, set in motion plans to scale our global manufacturing capacity to over 20 GWDC by 2025, and secured record year-to-date bookings of 43.7 GWDC with deliveries extending into 2027.”

The complete 2022 guidance has been updated as follows:

  Prior Current
Net Sales $2.55B to $2.8B $2.6B to $2.7B
Gross Profit (1)(2) $115M to $165M $75M to $110M
Operating Expenses (3) $350M to $365M $345M to $360M
Operating Income (2)(4)(5) $5M to $70M $(30)M to $20M
Earnings (Loss) per Diluted Share $(0.25) to $0.25 $(0.65) to $(0.35)
Net Cash Balance (6) $1.3B to $1.5B $1.6B to $2.0B
Capital Expenditures $850M to $1.1B $800M to $1.0B
Shipments 8.9GW to 9.4GW 9.1GW to 9.4GW

   (1)   Includes $10 million to $15 million of underutilization losses
   (2)   Includes $45 million to $50 million of losses associated with a legacy systems business asset in Chile
   (3)   Includes $80 million to $85 million of production start-up expense
   (4)   Includes $90 million to $100 million of production start-up expense and underutilization losses
   (5)   Includes $245 million pre-tax gain related to the sale of the Japan project development and O&M platforms
   (6)   Defined as cash, cash equivalents, marketable securities, and restricted cash less expected debt at the end of 2022

The guidance figures presented above are forward-looking statements that are subject to a variety of assumptions and estimates. Investors are encouraged to listen to the conference call and to review the accompanying materials, which contain more information about First Solar’s third quarter 2022 financial results, 2022 guidance, and financial outlook.

Conference Call Details

First Solar has scheduled a conference call for today, October 27, 2022, at 4:30 p.m. ET, to discuss this announcement. A live webcast of this conference call and accompanying materials are available at An audio replay of the conference call will be available through Friday, November 26, 2022, and can be accessed by dialing +1 (800) 770-2030 if you are calling from within the United States or +1 (647) 362-9199 if you are calling from outside the United States. A replay of the webcast will also be available on the Investors section of the Company’s website approximately five hours after the conclusion of the call and remain available for 30 days.

About First Solar, Inc.

First Solar is a leading American solar technology company and global provider of responsibly-produced eco-efficient solar modules advancing the fight against climate change. Developed at research and development labs in California and Ohio, the Company’s advanced thin film photovoltaic (“PV”) modules represent the next generation of solar technologies, providing a competitive, high-performance, lower-carbon alternative to conventional crystalline silicon PV panels. From raw material sourcing and manufacturing through end-of-life module recycling, First Solar’s approach to technology embodies sustainability and a responsibility towards people and the planet. For more information, 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. All statements in this release, other than statements of historical fact, are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements concerning: demand for our technology; our expected module shipment backlog; the anticipated sale of our Luz del Norte project in Chile; our financial guidance for 2022, including future financial results, operating results, net sales, gross margin, operating expenses, operating income, earnings per share, loss per share, net cash balance, capital expenditures, shipments, bookings, products and our business and financial objectives for 2022; bookings momentum; and the strength of our backlog of future expected deliveries. These forward-looking statements are often characterized by the use of words such as “estimate,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “project,” “plan,” “intend,” “seek,” “believe,” “forecast,” “foresee,” “likely,” “may,” “should,” “goal,” “target,” “might,” “will,” “could,” “predict,” “continue,” “contingent” 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 and therefore speak only as of the date of this release. 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, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise. 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 our forward-looking statements. These factors include, but are not limited to: structural imbalances in global supply and demand for PV solar modules; our competitive position and other key competitive factors; the market for renewable energy, including solar energy; the reduction, elimination, expiration or introduction of government subsidies, policies, and support programs for solar energy projects; the impact of public policies, such as tariffs or other trade remedies imposed on solar cells and modules; the passage of legislation intended to encourage renewable energy investments through tax credits; interest rate fluctuations and both our and our customers’ ability to secure financing; changes in the exchange rates between the functional currencies of our subsidiaries and other currencies in which assets and liabilities are denominated; our ability to execute on our long-term strategic plans; the loss of any of our large customers, or the ability of our customers and counterparties to perform under their contracts with us; our ability to execute on our solar module technology and cost reduction roadmaps; our ability to improve the wattage of our solar modules; the creditworthiness of our offtake counterparties and the ability of our offtake counterparties to fulfill their contractual obligations to us; the satisfaction of conditions precedent in our sales agreements; our ability to attract new customers and to develop and maintain existing customer and supplier relationships; our ability to successfully develop and complete our systems business projects; our ability to convert existing production facilities to support new product lines; general economic and business conditions, including those influenced by U.S., international, and geopolitical events; environmental responsibility, including with respect to cadmium telluride (“CdTe”) and other semiconductor materials; claims under our limited warranty obligations; changes in, or the failure to comply with, government regulations and environmental, health, and safety requirements; effects resulting from pending litigation; future collection and recycling costs for solar modules covered by our module collection and recycling program; supply chain disruption, including the availability of shipping containers, port congestion, canceled shipments by logistic providers, and the cost of fuel, demurrage, and detention charges, all of which may be exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine conflict; our ability to protect our intellectual property; our ability to prevent and/or minimize the impact of cyber-attacks or other breaches of our information systems; our continued investment in research and development; the supply and price of components and raw materials, including CdTe; our ability to convert existing or construct production facilities to support new product lines; our ability to attract and retain key executive officers and associates; the severity and duration of the COVID-19 pandemic, including its potential impact on our business, financial condition, and results of operations; and the matters discussed under the captions “Risk Factors” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Conditions and Results of Operations” of our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and our subsequently filed Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, as supplemented by our other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.


First Solar Investors

First Solar Media

(In thousands, except share data)

    September 30,
  December 31,
Current assets:        
Cash and cash equivalents   $ 1,150,982     $ 1,450,654  
Marketable securities     776,213       375,389  
Accounts receivable trade, net     325,421       429,436  
Accounts receivable unbilled, net     35,149       25,273  
Inventories     810,660       666,299  
Other current assets     240,325       244,192  
Total current assets     3,338,750       3,191,243  
Property, plant and equipment, net     3,124,079       2,649,587  
PV solar power systems, net     153,915       217,293  
Project assets     27,827       315,488  
Deferred tax assets, net     64,101       59,162  
Restricted marketable securities     182,208       244,726  
Goodwill     14,462       14,462  
Intangible assets, net     36,631       45,509  
Inventories     239,644       237,512  
Other assets     311,200       438,764  
Total assets   $ 7,492,817     $ 7,413,746  
Current liabilities:        
Accounts payable   $ 188,280     $ 193,374  
Income taxes payable     25,771       4,543  
Accrued expenses     333,140       288,450  
Current portion of long-term debt     5,435       3,896  
Deferred revenue     235,293       201,868  
Other current liabilities     28,349       34,747  
Total current liabilities     816,268       726,878  
Accrued solar module collection and recycling liability     120,173       139,145  
Long-term debt     254,224       236,005  
Other liabilities     473,815       352,167  
Total liabilities     1,664,480       1,454,195  
Commitments and contingencies        
Stockholders’ equity:        
Common stock, $0.001 par value per share; 500,000,000 shares authorized; 106,605,913 and 106,332,315 shares issued and outstanding at September 30, 2022 and December 31, 2021, respectively     107       106  
Additional paid-in capital     2,880,243       2,871,352  
Accumulated earnings     3,147,837       3,184,455  
Accumulated other comprehensive loss     (199,850 )     (96,362 )
Total stockholders’ equity     5,828,337       5,959,551  
Total liabilities and stockholders’ equity   $ 7,492,817     $ 7,413,746  

(In thousands, except per share amounts)

    Three Months Ended     Nine Months Ended
    September 30,
  June 30,
  September 30,
    September 30,
  September 30,
Net sales   $ 628,933     $ 620,955     $ 583,504       $ 1,616,928     $ 2,016,058  
Cost of sales     607,951       644,155       458,924         1,607,683       1,532,593  
Gross profit (loss)     20,982       (23,200 )     124,580         9,245       483,465  
Operating expenses:                      
Selling, general and administrative     46,368       38,894       43,476         121,990       131,909  
Research and development     29,183       25,229       25,426         81,520       69,234  
Production start-up     19,768       13,231       2,945         40,337       16,014  
Total operating expenses     95,319       77,354       71,847         243,847       217,157  
Gain on sales of businesses, net     5,984       245,381       (1,866 )       253,272       147,284  
Operating (loss) income     (68,353 )     144,827       50,867         18,670       413,592  
Foreign currency loss, net     (4,859 )     (2,984 )     (1,018 )       (12,041 )     (4,613 )
Interest income     9,749       2,880       1,752         14,954       3,996  
Interest expense, net     (2,991 )     (3,236 )     (2,958 )       (9,092 )     (10,577 )
Other income (expense), net     4,774       (1,883 )     (2,603 )       2,679       2,598  
(Loss) income before taxes     (61,680 )     139,604       46,040         15,170       404,996  
Income tax benefit (expense)     12,512       (83,799 )     (837 )       (51,788 )     (67,673 )
Net (loss) income   $ (49,168 )   $ 55,805     $ 45,203       $ (36,618 )   $ 337,323  
Net (loss) income per share:                      
Basic   $ (0.46 )   $ 0.52     $ 0.43       $ (0.34 )   $ 3.18  
Diluted   $ (0.46 )   $ 0.52     $ 0.42       $ (0.34 )   $ 3.16  
Weighted-average number of shares used in per share calculations:                      
Basic     106,596       106,586       106,320         106,532       106,241  
Diluted     106,596       107,056       106,899         106,532       106,879  

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Source: First Solar, Inc.
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