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SunPower Corporation (SPWR - Analyst Report) along with AE-AMD Renewable Energy and other partners have jointly completed 33-megawatts (MW) ground-mounted solar projects in South Africa. Under the program, SunPower constructed both the projects – 22-MW Herbert project and 11-MW Greefspan project. The projects are part of the South African government's Independent Power Producers Procurement Program.

Both the facilities are located near Douglas, Northern Cape Province in South Africa. SunPower utilized 138,000 units of photovoltaic solar panels on single-axis trackers in the projects.

Currently, both the projects will be owned by AE-AMD Renewable Energy, a joint venture between the Spanish AMDA energia and the South African Alt-E Technologies, in partnership with the IDEAS Fund. IDEAS Fund is an infrastructure fund managed by Old Mutual Investment Group of South Africa. The electricity from the facilities will be sold by the partnership to the South African electricity public utility Eskom.

SunPower has a significant presence in South Africa. Under an 86-MW solar project in Prieska by South Africa's Department of Energy, the company will likely offer engineering, procurement and construction, and long-term operation and maintenance services. The project is part of the Independent Power Producers Procurement Program.

We note that globally demand for renewable energy is gradually rising, primarily on the back of an increasing awareness among the masses about its low-emission nature, thereby influencing utility providers to shift to clean energy.

Apart from SunPower, its peers such as ReneSola Ltd. (SOL - Analyst Report) and JinkoSolar Holding Co., Ltd (JKS - Snapshot Report) are also expanding their operations, particularly in South Africa to capitalize on the aforesaid opportunity.

In addition to solidifying its operations in the U.S., SunPower is currently expanding in Asia and Africa to take advantage of the rapidly growing solar market. These initiatives will help the company to diversify its revenue stream, thereby ensuring stable future cash inflows.

SunPower currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). However, a better-ranked stock in the industry is JA Solar Holdings Co., Ltd. (JASO - Analyst Report), carrying a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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