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On 20th Anniversary, First Solar Sets 25GW Milestone for Cleaner, Thin Film Solar

First Solar Energy Services celebrates ten years of success and 10GW under management

TEMPE, Ariz., Sept. 23, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- First Solar, Inc. (FSLR) is celebrating two decades since its founding in 1999 and 25 gigawatts (GW)DC of photovoltaic (PV) modules shipped, making it the only American solar manufacturing company to achieve this milestone.

“Today, First Solar powers communities, infrastructure, and decarbonization ambitions with the world’s cleanest PV solar technology; technology that forms the backbone of utility-scale solar fleets in some of the largest markets around the globe. This leadership is no accident and is driven by a combination of determined innovation, and an unwavering focus on delivering value to our customers and our shareholders,” said Mark Widmar, Chief Executive Officer, First Solar. “As we celebrate these important milestones, we’re taking the opportunity to recommit ourselves to our vision of leading the world’s sustainable energy future.”

Headquartered in Tempe, Arizona, First Solar’s technological roots are in Perrysburg, Ohio, where the Company achieved commercial production of its proprietary thin film module technology in 2002. Since then, First Solar has celebrated numerous milestones, including the establishment of the industry’s first PV module recycling program in 2005, and becoming the first solar module manufacturer to break the $1 per watt barrier, while also producing 1GW of modules in 2009.    

More recently, First Solar has successfully transitioned to its new large-format Series 6 module, which was designed and developed at the Company’s research and development centers in California and Ohio. The module leverages First Solar’s proprietary thin film technology, retaining the proven performance and reliability advantages of earlier generation modules. Produced in just 3.5 hours using sophisticated, fully-integrated manufacturing processes at factories in the United States, Malaysia, and Vietnam, the Series 6 module has a carbon footprint that is up to six times lower than crystalline silicon PV panels that are manufactured using conventional, energy-intensive production methods.

First Solar is on track to become the largest solar module manufacturer in the Western Hemisphere when its second Series 6 factory in the United States - representing nearly $1 billion in cumulative investment – becomes operational in early-2020. Once operational, the new facility in Perrysburg, Ohio, will take First Solar’s aggregate Series 6 manufacturing capacity to 5.4GW per year.

“From 1.5MW of annual production less than two decades ago to multiple gigawatts today, our journey has seen us successfully overcome challenges and make the most of opportunities. Our ability to not just survive but to thrive in challenging environments that have claimed a number of our competitors is due to the relentless energy and the sense of purpose that drives us as a company,”  Widmar said.

Meanwhile, First Solar Energy Services, the solar industry’s top Operations and Maintenance (O&M) provider is also celebrating ten years of success and 10GW of assets under management. Recognized as the global industry leader in operating and maintaining utility-scale solar plants by Wood Mackenzie and IHS, First Solar Energy Services’ technology agnostic experience spans several PV, tracker, and inverter manufacturers.

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 www.firstsolar.com.

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, but are not limited to, statements concerning the 20th anniversary of First Solar, Inc. the celebration of 25GWDC of modules shipped, the 10th anniversary of First Solar Energy Services, and 10GW of solar assets under Operations and Maintenance (O&M) management. 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” 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 these statements. These factors include, but are not limited to, 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. 

Contacts

Reuven Proença
First Solar Media
reuven.proenca@firstsolar.com

Steve Kerekes
Kyte Consulting for First Solar
steve@jkyteconsulting.com
          First Solar Investors
investor@firstsolar.com