Canadian Solar 3Q more than doubles, shares jump

AP News
Posted: Nov 17, 2009 8:59 AM

Canadian Solar Inc. on Tuesday said its third-quarter profit more than doubled on a hefty foreign currency exchange gain, boosting shares in premarket trading. The solar products maker also forecast a surge in 2010 shipments, as it expects demand to rebound.

Shares added 55 cents, or 2.8 percent, to $20.25 in trading before the opening bell.

In the most recent quarter, the company reported an exchange gain of $9.7 million, compared with an exchange loss of $17.3 million in the prior-year period.

Demand picked up in the third quarter, sending shipments soaring 71 percent to 102.6 megawatts, but due to weak prices, revenue still tumbled. Prices of solar cells have been hurt by weaker prices for polysilicon, a key ingredient used in the making of solar cells.

Quarterly earnings rose to $25.3 million, or 69 cents per share, from $11.1 million, or 31 cents per share, during the same period last year. Results beat analyst estimates of 54 cents per share, according to a survey by Thomson Reuters.

Revenue declined 16 percent to $213.1 million from $252.4 million in the prior-year period. Analysts forecast an average revenue of $210.9 million.

For all of 2009, the company expects shipments between 295 megawatts and 305 megawatts. Based on a rising demand forecast, the company predicted 2010 shipments in the range between 600 megawatts and 700 megawatts. The company plans to increase its solar module production capacity from to 800 megawatts to 1 gigawatt by the end of April 2010.

"We believe that the demand for our high quality solar modules will come from all major markets, including Germany, Italy, the U.S., the Czech Republic, South Korea and Spain," the company said in a statement. "We also expect strong growth from our newer markets, such as Canada, Japan and China."