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Solar cell manufacturer SunPower Corporation (SPWR - Analyst Report) made further inroads in the Japanese residential solar cell market by extending its partnership with Toshiba. The two companies joined forces to meet the growing demand for solar cells in Japan.
Toshiba has been working with SunPower since 2010 and has already taken delivery of 70 megawatts (MW) of high-performance solar panels. Per the new agreement, SunPower will be delivering another 100 MW of solar panels to Toshiba.
The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant disaster to a large extent altered Japan’s energy fuel mix for power generation. Prior to the disaster nearly 13% of the power needs of the country were being met by nuclear sources. However, following this disaster nearly all the nuclear-based power plants were shut for safety and maintenance reasons, which led to increased demand for other sources of power generation.
Alternate, non-polluting energy, which had minimal contribution to Japan’s total power generation, suddenly gained prominence after the accident. Besides, there has been a rise in both residential demand for solar panels as well as large-scale commercial demand for solar, supported by the Japanese government.
SunPower currently has a short-term Zacks #3 Rank (Hold rating). Recently, one of its peers, First Solar Inc. (FSLR - Analyst Report) has entered into a purchase power agreement with a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (PCG - Analyst Report). As per the contract, the former will sell 72 MW of solar electricity from its two power plants to the latter.
San Jose, California based SunPower Corporation designs, develops, manufactures, markets and sells high-performance solar electric power technology products, systems and services worldwide for residential, commercial and utility-scale power plant customers. With a market capitalization of $0.57 billion, the company has 5,220 full time employees.
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