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Written by: Leonard Parker | Solar News | 18th November
Array Technologies, one of the world’s largest providers of utility-scale solar tracker technology, is acquiring Soluciones Técnicas Integrales Norland, S.L. (STI Norland), one of Europe’s leading manufacturers of solar trackers. Headquartered in Pamplona, Spain, STI Norland has leading positions in Iberia and Latin America, including the rapidly growing Brazilian solar market.
“This transaction is an important first step in the expansion strategy that we articulated when we announced our preferred equity investment from Blackstone in August,” said Brad Forth, Chairman of Array. “The combination of Array and STI Norland creates the global leader in trackers with leading positions in every major market for solar outside of China and India. The increased scale of the combined enterprise also provides opportunities for significant cost reduction as we drive greater volumes with our suppliers and achieve increased leverage on our fixed costs,”
STI Norland manufactures a reliable, dual row tracker system that is ideal for projects in markets where the cost of installation labor is lower than in the U.S. and wind and snow load factors are significantly lower. Access to STI Norland’s product gives Array a broader product portfolio that will allow the company to provide global customers with the product that best meets their goals given site conditions, local content requirements, labor costs and objectives for upfront cost and total lifetime cost.
STI Norland has completed or been awarded tracker systems for more than 400 projects globally, representing over 12 GW of generation capacity. Over the past several years, the company has achieved high double-digit percentage revenue and EBITDA growth by leveraging the strength of its products and sales teams which are well-suited to the needs of certain international customers.
“We look forward to welcoming STI Norland’s employees to Array. Both STI Norland and Array are rooted in entrepreneurial, founder-operated businesses that are focused on innovation. Together, I believe we have the technology, culture and capabilities to build a truly global business that can create tremendous value for our customers, employees and shareholders,” said Jim Fusaro, Chief Executive Officer of Array.
Javier Reclusa, Chief Executive Officer of STI Norland, added, “The entire STI Norland team is excited about joining Array and the opportunities that the combination of the two companies will unlock. We have a tremendous amount of respect for Array, its technology and management and I look forward to working closely with Brad and Jim to support their ambitious expansion plans.”
The combination of Array and STI creates the largest solar tracker company in the world, with leading positions in North America, Latin America and Europe. With manufacturing capacity and design and engineering resources on three continents, the combined organization’s ability to support customers on a global basis will be unparalleled.
Following the closing of the transaction, Array intends to initiate several cost reduction plans across the combined company which will include evaluating additional supplier discounts that may be available from combining purchasing volumes, identifying common components where either company has advantaged pricing, and implementing mutual manufacturing best practices across both companies’ facilities to reduce cost.
STI Norland is the leading provider of solar trackers in Brazil, and its position is reinforced by its local manufacturing presence and supply chain. Brazil has the third highest solar resource of any country. Annual utility-scale solar installations in Brazil have more than tripled over the past three years as the LCOE for solar has fallen below conventional generation. Nearly 10 GWs of utility-scale solar is forecast to be installed in Brazil in 2022 and 2023 according to industry analysts with over 90% of those projects using trackers.
By leveraging STI Norland’s existing sales infrastructure and relationships, Array will be able to accelerate its expansion plans for international markets. The combined company is expected to derive approximately 30% of its revenues from international projects in 2022. Array expects that the strength of STI Norland’s relationships will help to drive increased sales to these customers both in the U.S. and internationally.
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