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December 17, 2012

Kyocera Reaches 2M Module Mark in Americas



After a well-choreographed entry into the Americas market, Kyocera (News - Alert) is heralding an impressive new production number.

The company has announced that its Americas-based manufacturing facilities have surpassed production of two million photovoltaic (PV) solar modules – doubling production within the past two years.

Kyocera has been manufacturing modules in Tijuana, Mexico since 2004, and in San Diego, California since 2010.

The parent Kyocera Group, based in Kyoto, Japan, produced its first PV modules more than 30 years ago, before expanding abroad. In addition to its domestic and Americas operations, the company now has solar module plants in China and the Czech Republic.

Kyocera cumulatively has manufactured and installed more than 1.2 gigawatts of solar collection equipment and more than seven million modules to date.

According to Steve Hill, president of Kyocera Solar Inc., headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, “This milestone demonstrates Kyocera’s ongoing leadership in growing the solar industry worldwide. It took more than five years for Kyocera to reach the one-million module mark at our [Americas] operations and only two years to double it.”

“We’re seeing many regions increasingly embrace high-quality solar energy solutions, and ongoing innovations from Kyocera will continue to improve efficiencies,” he said.

The company's solar solutions are powering installations at prominent locations on the West Coast, including the San Diego Zoo; the SDG&E Energy Innovation Center; San Diego State University; University of California– San Diego; University of San Diego; Point Loma Nazarene University; San Diego Children's Museum; and the Gloria E. McClellan Senior Center in Vista, California.

What’s more, the company “walks its own talk.” Today, 25 Kyocera facilities worldwide have deployed onsite solar electric systems, with total generating capacity of 2.7 megawatts – including a 214-kilowatt Solar Grove parking lot in San Diego and a 100-kilowatt rooftop system in Tijuana.

But like most other solar companies, Kyocera may be having trouble moving inventory. Announcing its 1H 2012 financial results at the end of October, the company said that sales in its solar energy business had decreased, due to a decline in demand in Europe and diminishing product prices worldwide, combined with the appreciation of the Yen.

Kyocera’s Applied Ceramic Products segment – which includes cutting tools along with photovoltaics – lost Yen 5.3 billion ($66.4 million) in sales against the same period in 2011.

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Edited by Braden Becker

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