SunPower Corp. (NASDAQ: SPWR) has agreed to acquire competitor SolarWorld Americas of Hillsboro, Oregon, as SunPower looks to capitalize on what it called "strong U.S. market demand" for solar panels and to reduce the impact of Trump administration tariffs on imported panels.
SunPower did not say what it will pay for SolarWorld Americas. However, it did say it plans to "inject fresh capital" into the SolarWorld Americas facility in Oregon, though it did not specify the size of the planned investment.
Reuters noted that while SunPower is based in San Jose, California, most of its manufacturing is in Mexico and the Philippines. Reuters said the Trump administration tariffs were the result in part of a solar trade case brought by U.S. manufacturers, including SolarWorld, which claimed they could not compete with cheap imports.
Shares of SunPower were down around 5% in premarket trading on Monday, at US$9.20 a share.
Tom Werner, SunPower CEO and chairman, said SolarWorld Americas "provides a great platform for us to implement our advanced P-Series solar panel manufacturing technology right here in our home market."
"P-Series technology was invented and perfected in Silicon Valley, and will now be built in SolarWorld Americas' factory, helping to reshape solar manufacturing in America," Werner said.
Jürgen Stein, CEO of SolarWorld Americas, said the company is "thrilled about this acquisition as it means quite simply that our company can look forward to redoubled strength as it continues to innovate and expand into the future."
SunPower said it will invest in factory improvements while retrofitting a portion of the Oregon facility to produce P-Series solar panels, "in addition to continuing to produce and ship SolarWorld Americas' legacy products."
SunPower said the agreement is subject to U.S. and German regulatory approvals and other closing conditions. At closing, which is expected in the next several months, SunPower said it will become the largest U.S. solar panel manufacturer.