In June 2012 I compiled my research into the quarterly reports of the major players in photovoltaics, and even though Suntech still hasn’t released its final Q2 2012 numbers, I think it is time for an update. Companies such as Suntech, Trina, Yingli, Canadian, Sharp, and Hanwha Solarone focus on revenue from module sales and so a rough idea of their cost to produce panels can be found in their production numbers and cost of revenue.
Trina and Hanwha appear to be the cost leaders with cost of revenue below 0.80 $/W and gross margins around +8-10%. Suntech boasts a high volume with 507 MWp shipped in Q2, but the weakest gross margin of -10%.
Other significant PV manufacturers such as JA Solar, Jinko Solar, LDK, Motech and Gintech focus on revenue from poly, wafers or cells, making them hard to compare to companies listed above that focus on revenue from modules. Companies that focus on installation and solar projects such as Sunpower and First Solar are also difficult to compare. Maybe I’ll figure out a useful way to compare everybody by the time Q3 financials come out!