Germany-based solar inverter manufacturer SMA Solar Technology AG says it anticipates a difficult 2013, with massive subsidy reductions for PV in Europe causing a significant drop in product sales. As a result, the company plans to cut 450 permanent positions and 600 temporary jobs worldwide.
‘The growth â�¦ of the non-European photovoltaic markets [is] not sufficient to compensate for the expected decrease in European demand,’ explains Pierre-Pascal Urbon, speaker of the managing board. ‘Due to strongly growing price pressure, we cannot compensate for such a drop in sales in such a short time only through productivity improvements and technical innovations.
‘In the best-case scenario, we expect a balanced operating result for 2013,’ he continues. ‘At present, we cannot exclude the possibility of a loss.’
In the coming year, SMA will invest more than 100 million euros in research and development. Developing completely new product platforms is expected to reduce production costs significantly by 2014, the company notes. Energy management products and solar-diesel hybrid systems are expected to play a greater role in the market.