Trina Solar Buys Mainland China Solar-Cell Maker

SAN FRANCISCO  — Chinese solar-cell manufacturer Trina Solar Ltd. last week it is buying a majority stake in a mainland China solar-cell maker, as it seeks to expand capacity.

U.S.-listed shares of Trina Solar TSL -3.78% shares declined 3.5%, in line with most solar and clean energy-related stocks on Friday. More broadly, U.S. stocks edged higher, recovering some ground after a mixed batch of economic news, including a surprise drop in industrial production in January.

 China Solar-Cell Maker

Trina said it was forming a joint venture with Shenzhen S.C. New Energy Technology Corporation to take a 51% stake in Shenzhen S.C. subsidiary Hubei Hongyuan PV Science and Technology Co., Ltd. The company will change its name to Hubei Trina Solar Co., Ltd. No further details were disclosed.

Shares of Trina Solar have gained 180% in the past 12 months, although it has lost 9% in the last three months.

Among solar-panel makers, Trina Solar has been a top gainer. First Solar Inc. FSLR +0.61% shares have risen 50% in the past 12 months, while U.S.-listed shares of Yingli Green Energy Holdings YGE -1.64% are up 76% in the same period.

Trina’s announcement comes two weeks after China said it wants to install 14 gigawatts in solar-power installations, which would be a large revenue driver for Trina Solar. China reported it installed 12 gw in solar panels last year.

The news from Trina was a bit overshadowed by more bad news from insolvent solar-cell maker Suntech Power Holdings Co.

The company said Friday the New York Stock Exchange has denied its appeal and will start delisting proceedings of the company’s American Depositary Shares.

Trading on the NYSE had been suspended since November, and the company had been trading on the over-the-counter market.

The one-time solar-panel maker giant said late January it planned on filing for bankruptcy protection in U.S. courts. It defaulted on its debt in March.

Meanwhile, other solar shares were seeing red on Friday. Solar installer SolarCity Corp. SCTY -2.46% shares were off 1.7%, while shares of rival SunEdison Inc. SUNE -1.73% declined 1.1%. Renewable fuels makers fared better, with Solazyme Inc. SZYM +1.00% shares up 2.3%.

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