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BenzingaEditorial

Solar Companies Who Not Only Dominate the Solar Industry But Thrive Despite Coronavirus

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Solar Automotive Tesla Stocks

Currently, the top 3 solar manufacturers in the world are all from China. They are namely JinkoSolar Holding Co (NYSE:JKS), JA Solar and Trina Solar Ltd (respectively) determined by market share among panel manufacturing companies. As for the US, the biggest solar installation companies are Sunrun Inc (NASDAQ:RUN) who recently missed earnings estimates but surpassed revenue and Vivint Solar Inc (NYSE:VSLR) who is even gaining as the market plunges. But don’t be fooled by size as the Coronavirus will do much more harm to Chinese companies as opposed to their US counterparts. Overall, the solar industry underwent some major changes over the past few years, and new leaders have emerged. This editorial is an applause to the companies who persevered and have a bright future ahead as this seems to be a great year for U.S. solar in general.

Freedom Solar

Austin-based company just had its most profitable year since it was founded in 2007. According to SEIA, Texas is the No. 4 state when it comes to solar rankings and this is despite the not so compelling macroeconomic conditions. Its ranking is driven heavily by the utility segment, while the U.S. residential solar market hit record highs in the third quarter of 2019.

Specifically, Freedom Solar experienced a 75% growth in revenue to nearly $50 million in 2019 with residential sales increasing 94%. But more interestingly, the company has witnessed a growing trend towards solar among Texas automobile dealerships. Freedom Solar’s corporate clients including Whole Foods acquired by Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Office Depot (NASDAQ:ODP), and The University of Texas, among others.

Tesla/Panasonic joined forces

Notably, Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) and Panasonic Corporation (OTC:PCRFY)  each began manufacturing U.S. solar panels way back in late 2017. The two companies are now producing Tesla’s new solar roof product and low-profile solar panels at its large manufacturing plant in Buffalo, known as the Gigafactory. And this is only one of the things which Tesla sceptics were wrong about as its solar investment can only support Tesla’s recent skyrocketing performance long-term.

Franchise Holdings International 

Going further in bringing electric vehicles and solar energy together, Franchise Holdings International’s (OTC:FNHI) Worksport is set to launch solar-powered tonneau covers for pickup trucks. And by being able to store energy, Worksport’s patented technology can possibly even extend the driving range of electric pickups, resolving their greatest setback – and who knows what else the company’s rich portfolio of intellectual patents could do!

With General Motors (NYSE:GM) unveiling its Ultium battery technology and announcing a $20 billion investment in electrification and Ford (NYSE: F) investing $11 billion in electric cars, Franchise Holdings International could be at the right place at the right time with their solar based tonneau cover.

It’s not all sunshine for First Solar Inc 

First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR) just experienced a sharp price decline after it released the weaker than expected Q4 results. The company is likely to start focusing more heavily on manufacturing as less on development but its technology does remain as its bright spot. But the truth is that the company performed poorly as it missed several important metrics and will likely continue to face numerous headwinds ahead.Q4 net sales amounted to $1.4 billion and net cash to $1.8 billion so on the bright side, First Solar is still one of the most financially stable solar companies in the industry. But despite its strong fundamentals, it appears to be losing momentum as it reported an unexpected GAAP loss of $.56 per share in Q4. possibly costing the company its main appeal to investors: its its ability to generate stable profits. While First Solar manufacturers some of the highest quality solar panels in the industry, it is unclear whether focusing on manufacturing is a winning long-term strategy in the long-term. But it’s nice to have strong enough manufacturing core to fall back upon if the company decides to scale back on systems development. Moreover, the current Coronavirus crisis could play out to its advantage as it will have a much more severe impact on its Chinese competitors.

Increased competitiveness and complexity ahead

When looking at the big picture, the solar industry is only getting more crowded and complex- and more competitive along the way. With competition ramping up in all directions, it’s not only First Solar that is facing a daunting path ahead. The solar industry appeared to be heading down the path of vertical integration just a few years ago with the collapse of vertically integrated giants like SolarCity, SunEdison (OTC:SUNEQ), and other major solar companies, But now, major solar companies like First Solar are starting to refocus their business on specific segments. This so-called trend of specialization is epitomized by the recent rise of companies like SolarEdge (NASDAQ:SEDG) and Enphase (NASDAQ:ENPH) which are now some of the most valuable companies in the industry despite not even being focused on module manufacturing or project development. This trend of specialization makes sense as the solar industry is growing in complexity with every passing year and we are surely to see more specialization in the near future.

This article is not a press release and is contributed by Ivana Popovic who is a verified independent journalist for IAMNewswire. It should not be construed as investment advice at any time please read the full disclosure. Ivana Popovic does not hold any position in the mentioned companies. Press Releases – If you are looking for full Press release distribution contact: press@iamnewswire.com Contributors – IAM Newswire accepts pitches. If you’re interested in becoming an IAM journalist contact: contributors@iamnewswire.com Questions about this release can be send to ivana@iamnewswire.com

 

BenzingaEditorial

The EV Industry Is Worth More Than The Traditional Automakers

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Many things that were considered to be impossible actually happened in 2020. One of them is that electric vehicle makers became more valuable than traditional automakers and by about by about $100 billion, according to Barrons. EV makers are now worth about $1.3 trillion whereas traditional car makers combined have a market capitalization of about $1.2 trillion. This figure includes 100 auto makers around the globe with market caps ranging from $10 million all the way to Tesla’s (NASDAQ: TSLA). Based on its fully diluted share count, Tesla is worth about $1 trillion.

This feat is even more impressive if you consider that this is a much smaller industry based on actual number of cars. The last year taught us that the connection between the stock market and the economy is imprecise at best. However, the fact that technology enabled batteries to overpass ICEs is the kind of disruption that investors look for. Even though Tesla is the main contributor to the value of the EV market, the overall image is just as impressive as three of the top five most valuable are EV makers, with Tesla being followed by NIO (NYSE: NIO) and BYD (OTC: BYDDF). As for traditional automakers, Volkswagen (OTC: VWAGY) and Toyota (NYSE: TM) are the most valuable ones with both undergoing serious investments into electrification.

Traditional automakers are going electric

On Friday, BMW said it aims to double its sales of fully-electric vehicles this year. Including plug-in hybrids, it aims for a 50 percent increase in sales of electrified vehicles versus 2020. It did not give sales volumes for its fully electric vehicles but in data released on Tuesday, BMW said it sold close to 193,000 electrified vehicles, including fully electric and plug-in hybris in 2020. As a reminder, Tesla delivered almost half a million all-electric models last year, which is 75% of General Motor’s (NYSE: GM) third-quarter deliveries.

The automotive industry is at an inflection point

BEVs take approximately 1% of the total market for light vehicles, but the figure rises to about 3% if we include hybrid and plug-in hybrids. Why exactly it takes a relatively small market share to disrupt an industry is a bit of a mystery, but one reason is that more investment capital tends to flow in when market share come is within the 3% to 5% range. As more capital drives more innovation and improvement, investors are lured by high growth rates, bringing in even more capital and this is how success is made. Over the past year, EV makers have raised more than $20 billion in fresh capital, which is a fraction of what traditional auto companies spend on plants and equipment. However, on a per car basis, the EV industry is investing at roughly 10 times the rate of the traditional industry. Add to this President Joe Biden’s aim of a carbon-free future by 2035 and the drive toward adoption of EVs which is already seeing impressive results in Europe, the all-electric future is around the corner.

This article is not a press release and is contributed by a verified independent journalist for IAMNewswire. It should not be construed as investment advice at any time please read the full disclosure. IAM Newswire does not hold any position in the mentioned companies. Press Releases – If you are looking for full Press release distribution contact: press@iamnewswire.com Contributors – IAM Newswire accepts pitches. If you’re interested in becoming an IAM journalist contact: contributors@iamnewswire.com

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BenzingaEditorial

Europe and EVs- A Blossoming Relationship

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Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) delivered around 96,000 units to the key European EV market in 2020. But in Europe, Tesla’s cars were overtaken in popularity by Volkswagen (OTC: VWAGY) and Renault (OTC: RNLSY). Sales of electric vehicles by European car makers accelerated rapidly in 2020 amid severe fines for car markers whose fleets don’t meet new emissions targets and generous incentives for buyers to trade in their ICE vehicles.

Volkswagen

Volkswagen reported it delivered 212,000 electric cars across the globe in 2020, which is 158% more than in the year prior. 134,000 of those vehicles were battery-electric vehicles, which grew 197% compared with 2019. Volkswagen also said that its ID. 3 model was the top-selling car in Sweden in December by absolute numbers. All-electric Volkswagen models were on top the Netherlands and Germany, taking approximately 23% of each country’s BEVs market.

Mercedes Benz

On January 8th, Mercedes-Benz-owner Daimler (OTC: DDAIF) said that the brand sold more than 160,000 plug-in hybrids and all-electric vehicles in 2020, representing growth of more than 228% from 2019. The share of EVs in Daimler’s sales mix rose drastically from 2% in 2019 to more than 7% in 2020. Also, Mercedes-Benz brand remained the world’s top-selling luxury carmaker for the fourth consecutive year.

Renault

Renault reported that it doubled its electric-vehicle sales in Europe. While group sales fell more than 21% in 2020, its EV sales grew 100% growth from 2019 to 115,888 vehicles. Moreover, total orders at the end of December 2020 were up by 14% compared to December 2019, which was attributed to new hybrid offerings. EVs were the only good news in an otherwise bleak 2020 for the French carmaker, which underperformed both global and European car markets. At the very least, Renault avoided fines as it met its 2020 EU emissions targets. On January 14th, its chief executive officer Luca de Meo will present a strategy update which is expected  to include reviving some older best-selling models as all-electric models.

BMW

BMW (OTC: BMWYY) which also owns Mini, said that its two brands combined sold 192,646 electric vehicles in 2020 marking an increase of nearly 32% from last year. BMW also met its 2020 EU emissions targets.

Takeaway

European governments have created generous incentives to speed up the adoption of EVs, making them much more affordable. Come 2025 when emission targets become more stricter and threat of fines for not respecting them even greater, Tesla will certainly be playing against fully-fit opponents and could even potentially struggle. An EV-only future looks closer than ever in Europe as the race is now on to challenge Tesla’s leadership.

This article is not a press release and is contributed by a verified independent journalist for IAMNewswire. It should not be construed as investment advice at any time please read the full disclosure. IAM Newswire does not hold any position in the mentioned companies. Press Releases – If you are looking for full Press release distribution contact: press@iamnewswire.com Contributors – IAM Newswire accepts pitches. If you’re interested in becoming an IAM journalist contact: contributors@iamnewswire.com

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BenzingaEditorial

Lenovo Makes Its Star Market Debut

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The COVID-19 pandemic had completely changed the way people work and learn. Operating from home actually turned around declining PC sales. Smartphones have been picking more and more market share from PCs and if there was no pandemic, this would probably still be the case. But instead of decreasing demand, there was record growth in PC sales as video collaboration software was needed to fulfill the need caused by closed offices and schools. The demand generated months and months of production. According to Reuters, sales of desktops, laptops, and tablets are expected to reach the level of 300 million shipments, the first time after its peak in 2008. This made all the PC manufacturers like Dell Technologies Inc. (NYSE: DELL), HP Inc. (NYSE: HPQ), and Lenovo Group Ltd. (OTC: LNVGY) very happy.

Lenovo CDR story

China’s Lenovo Group is listed at the Hong Kong stock exchange, with about 12.04 billion shares outstanding in total as of January 12th. The company decided to issue Chinese Depository receipts (CDRs) which will be up to 10% of the total number of shares to be listed on the Star Market of the Shanghai Stock Exchange. The proceeds from the issuing of CDRs is planned to help the company’s research and development of new technologies, development of new products and solutions, and overall strategic investments in core segments. On Wednesday, the news caused to stock to drove the stock to its highest level since 2015.

The Star Market

The Star Market was launched in 2019 aiming for innovative technology companies that need more relaxed listing rules. In December, the Star Market counted 200 companies. A CDR or Chinese Depositary Receipt is a way for non-Chinese companies to list their shares in China. This is the equivalent to American depositary receipts (ADRs) which allow non-U.S. companies’ shares to trade on American exchange markets. Technically, CDRs and ADRs are not companies’ shares, but they represent an equity interest in a company. Besides Lenovo, an AI startup that specializes in facial recognition called Megvii Technology Ltd will also be among the first companies to benefit from this new structure.

Conclusion

Lenovo’s listing should be a breakthrough for Shanghai’s Science Technology and Innovation Board. Lenovo, a flagship of the Star Market, should attract much more followers and clear a path for many Chinese start-ups to raise capital in their home country. The company’s strong and growing global presence should continue to demonstrate the boom of China’s capital market and attract more investors to invest.

This article is not a press release and is contributed by a verified independent journalist for IAMNewswire. It should not be construed as investment advice at any time please read the full disclosure. IAM Newswire does not hold any position in the mentioned companies. Press Releases – If you are looking for full Press release distribution contact: press@iamnewswire.com Contributors – IAM Newswire accepts pitches. If you’re interested in becoming an IAM journalist contact: contributors@iamnewswire.com

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