SAN JOSE, Calif., Sept. 29 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ:SPWR), a Silicon Valley-based manufacturer of the world's highest-efficiency, commercially-available solar cells and solar panels, today announced that it will invest in a joint venture with Woongjin Coway to manufacture mono-crystalline silicon ingots. This joint venture will operate in Korea, with polysilicon to be supplied primarily from DC Chemical, Korea's largest chemical company, with whom SunPower has previously announced a major supply agreement.
SunPower expects to purchase approximately $250 million of silicon ingot from the joint venture through a five-year supply agreement, which SunPower expects to execute upon formation of the joint venture. The venture is expected to begin manufacturing in the second half of 2007, and is projected to grow at a rate consistent with increasing polysilicon supply from DC Chemical. SunPower will contribute approximately $5 million of capital and technology expertise, and will sell polysilicon to the joint venture, and procure silicon ingot from the joint venture. SunPower's joint venture partner, Woongjin Coway, is a Korean equipment manufacturer and one of Korea's leading providers of environmental products. Woongjin Coway will contribute a similar level of capital, as well as operations and Korean marketing expertise.
"SunPower is committed to expanding its silicon portfolio," said PM Pai, chief operating officer, of SunPower Corporation. "Investing in a Korean- based ingot pulling enterprise with Woongjin Coway will leverage our DC Chemical polysilicon supply while capturing part of the value of this component of the supply chain."
"Woongjin Coway appreciates our new partnership with SunPower which will support the extension of our business into the solar industry," said Mr. Dong Hyun Kim, CFO of Woongjin Coway. "We see the solar industry as a tremendous long-term market and SunPower as a technology leader and an attractive joint venture partner."
SunPower Corporation designs and manufactures high-efficiency silicon solar cells and solar panels based on an all-back contact cell design. SunPower's solar cells and panels generate up to 50 percent more power per unit area than conventional solar technologies and have a uniquely attractive, all-black appearance. For more information on SunPower or solar technology, please visit the SunPower website at http://www.sunpowercorp.com . SunPower is a majority-owned subsidiary of Cypress Semiconductor Corp. (NYSE:CY).
About Woongjin Coway
Woongjin Coway specializes in the development and production of water and air purifiers. Woongjin has been a pioneer in the area of water purification in South Korea since its founding in 1989. Its reliability and customer service have been unparalleled in the water and air purifier market. Woongjin invests heavily in technical research and development. A variety of awards, prizes, and certifications demonstrate its 15-year history of technical research and development based products. For more information, visit www.coway.co.kr or www.cowayir.com.
Forward Looking Statements
Statements herein that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. We use words such as "estimated," "believe," "plan" and "expect" and similar expressions to identify forward-looking statements, which include, but are not limited to, statements referring to SunPower's plans and expectations about its supply of polysilicon (including from DC Chemical), ingots and wafers, general market supply of polysilicon, ingots and wafers, the future operations of the joint venture, its ability to begin production on schedule and increase production as projected, SunPower's anticipated aggregate ingot procurement under a five-year supply agreement with the joint venture, are forward-looking statements made pursuant to the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements are based on our current expectations as of the date of the release, which could change or not materialize as expected. Our actual results may differ materially due to a variety of uncertainties and risk factors, including but not limited to potential difficulties in establishing the joint venture's ingot pulling operations and meeting production schedules, particularly in view of the fact that the joint venture is a new entrant into the solar and ingot pulling industries, the ability of the joint venture to gain substantial operational expertise, hire technical and management employees and build complex facilities in a relatively short period of time, the potential that the joint venture will require additional capital to meet its operating plans for the supply of ingots, business and economic conditions and growth trends in the solar power industry, our suppliers' (including DC Chemical's) ability to provide adequate supply of polysilicon, ingots and wafers to manufacture our products, the price we pay for such material, and other risks described in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Except as required by law, we assume no obligation to update any such forward-looking statements.
NOTE: SunPower is a registered trademark of SunPower Corporation. Cypress is a registered trademark of Cypress Semiconductor Corp. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
Source: SunPower Corporation