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IQE

25 February 2014

HelioVolt seeks strategic investment alternatives as partner SK withdraws

HelioVolt Corp of Austin, TX, USA, which makes monolithically integrated copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) thin-film photovoltaic modules for the commercial rooftop and utility markets, says that its board of directors has authorized the evaluation of strategic alternatives for the firm’s photovoltaic development and manufacturing business. To maximize value in its CIGS technology, HelioVolt intends to consider a range of alternatives, including investments, joint ventures or a merger and acquisition (M&A) transaction that fits its strategic objectives.

The firm has suspended manufacturing operations to align its short-term cost structure with the objective of preserving maximum value in its intellectual property and demonstration facility while a suitable alternative is identified. HelioVolt will reduce personnel over the next 60 days as appropriate to support its evolving strategy.

“We are initiating this process because our strategic partner, SK Group [of Seoul, South Korea], for reasons related to their business strategy, has informed us that they will no longer pursue their prior global solar PV goals,” says founder & chief science officer B.J. Stanbery. “While we continue to highly value the relationship with SK and have made tremendous technical progress in partnership with them, we are disappointed by their decision at a moment when we believe the solar market is poised for exceptional growth,” he adds.

In September 2011, SK TIC (Technology Innovation Company) and SK Innovation (members of Seoul-based energy, chemicals and telecoms firm SK Group, which is Korea’s third largest conglomerate) invested $50m to expand HelioVolt’s Austin operations and launch global manufacturing expansion.

HelioVolt was founded in 2001 by Dr Billy J. Stanbery based on his proprietary FASST manufacturing process for rapid printing of thin-film CIGS material, either directly onto glass substrates for solar modules or onto flexible plastic substrate for embedding in building-integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) products.

“HelioVolt’s technology and strength of its commercial-ready manufacturing process have been greatly improved, having achieved new performance levels and reduced cost of ownership (COO), potentially becoming a world leader,” comments Dong Kim, HelioVolt’s executive chairman and president of the SK PV Task Force. “We are devoted to continue developing relationships with potential partners/investors who will pursue the manufacturing initiative with HelioVolt technology.”

See related items:

HelioVolt CIGS PV modules receive UL and IEC certifications

Korea’s SK invests $50m in CIGS PV maker HelioVolt

Tags: HelioVolt CIGS PV

Visit: www.heliovolt.com

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