Many on the Wall Street were surprised when SolarCity Corp (NASDAQ:SCTY) announced in June that it would build one of the world’s largest panel manufacturing plants in New York. That announcement accompanied SolarCity’s acquisition of high-efficiency panel maker Silevo. After attending a meeting with the company’s investor relations team, Deutsche Bank analysts Vishal Shah and Jerimiah Booream-Phelps offer some insights into how SolarCity will go ahead with the manufacturing facility.
SolarCity negotiating various incentives with New York
Deutsche Bank reiterated its Buy rating on the stock with $90 price objective. Analysts said SolarCity plans to make the 1GW plant in New York operational by the end of 2016. The company is currently in talks with New York state officials on different kinds of incentives it could receive for the capacity expansion. The San Mateo-based company estimates that a 1GW plant would require $400-$450 million in equipment capex. Land and buildings will need a little less than that.
SolarCity expects to pour in “a few hundred millions on net capex” after incentives have been awarded. To go ahead with this plan, Deutsche Bank believes that SolarCity will come up with a secondary offering by the end of this year. What’s more, the research firm estimates that SOlarCity’s short-term bookings momentum will remain strong through this year and accelerate further in 2015.
SolarCity not in a hurry to expand to additional states
The solar panel installer saw a 60% sequential growth in bookings during the second quarter. Though Q3 bookings growth will be a bit slower than that, there is a broad-based growth from several new markets. Non-California and Hawaii states are making up a bigger percentage of the company’s total installs. But SolarCity management doesn’t plan to expand its business to any additional states. The Elon Musk-backed company has operations in 15 states.
SolarCity reported its Q2 results on August 7. The company incurred a loss of 96 cents a share with $61.33 million in revenue. Analysts on average were expecting losses of 99 cents on revenue of $63.24 million. The company reported bookings of 218MW during the quarter. SolarCity has captured 29% of the U.S. residential solar market.
SolarCity shares rose 0.63% to $70.34 at 12:10 PM EDT on Friday.