How a solar system has become a $200 million business

The solar industry is booming, but the profits are not.

That’s the takeaway from a new report that shows how one solar panel manufacturer has turned its massive profits into a $20 billion business, while at the same time becoming one of the largest employers in the region.

The report from Bloomberg Businessweek, which examines solar industry profits in Canada, finds that companies such as SunPower Corp., SolarWorld Inc., Sungevity Inc. and SunEdison Inc. make up a “trending” percentage of Canadian solar revenue and generate $16 billion of total solar panel sales annually.

SolarWorld is the fourth-largest solar panel maker in the country and its revenues total $18.5 billion.

SunPower Corp. makes solar panels, which can be installed on rooftops, and has been profitable for years, but revenues from solar panels have plummeted over the past two years.

SunEdication, the largest solar installer in the U.S., is down nearly 40 percent in 2016 and is now down 20 percent in 2017, Bloomberg BusinessWeek noted.

“As a result, SolarWorld and SunPower are becoming increasingly reliant on government subsidies to survive, the report said.

In 2018, the two companies are estimated to have lost $6 billion in federal subsidies, according to the report.

The two companies have also seen a 25 percent decline in revenue over the last three years.

In 2016, SunEdization made more than $3 billion in profit, while SunPower was worth $6.4 billion.

SolarEdison is estimated to be worth about $5.8 billion, according the report, while SolarWorld was valued at $7.7 billion in 2016.

Bloomberg News: www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-08-04/solar-company-sees-profits-crushing-investment-insights-investors-say