SunPower

#3878

Rank

$1.99B

MarketCap US

US United States

Country

Summary
SunPower Corporation, a solar technology and energy services provider, offers solar, storage, and home energy solutions to customers primarily in the United States and Canada. It operates through Residential, Light Commercial; Commercial and Industrial Solutions; and Others segments. The company provides solar, storage, and home energy solutions and components through a combination of its third-party installing and non-installing dealer network and resellers, as well as in-house sales team; and turn-key engineering, procurement, and construction services and sale of energy under power purchase agreements. It also offers commercial roof, carport, and ground mounted systems; and post-installation monitoring and maintenance services. In addition, the company provides residential leasing services, as well as sells inverters manufactured by third parties. It primarily serves investors, financial institutions, project developers, electric utilities, independent power producers, commercial and governmental entities, production home builders, residential owners, and small commercial building owners. The company was incorporated in 1985 and is headquartered in San Jose, California. SunPower Corporation is a subsidiary of TotalEnergies SE.

History

Early history

SunPower was founded on April 24, 1985, by Richard Swanson, who was a Stanford University professor focused on electrical engineering. Swanson studied solar power efficiency in the Stanford Electronics Laboratory with funding from research grants.:?468? After breaking a record for solar power efficiency in lab conditions, he took a sabbatical to start SunPower and commercialize the technology. Initially, the company was called Eos and was funded with $2,000 in savings between Swanson and his friend Richard Crane.:?468? In 1989, Robert Lorenzini invested in the company, became its chairman, and changed the name to SunPower.:?468?Some of SunPower's early revenues were from research grants and using its manufacturing facilities to create silicon wafers for semiconductor companies.:?468? Interest grew as SunPower completed prototype installations and portable electronics that use solar power became more popular.:?468? Swanson resigned from his academic position at Stanford in 1991, in order to focus on SunPower full-time. The company's revenues grew from $600,000 in 1989 to $1.4 million in 1995, and $6 million in 1996.:?468? However, by 2001 the company was anticipating having to lay off half of its employees.

Growth

SunPower founder Richard Swanson's former classmate, T.J. Rodgers, was the CEO of Cypress Semiconductor and took an interest in investing in the company. At first, the Cypress board wasn't willing to invest, so Rodgers invested $750,000 of his own money. Starting with an investment of $8 million, Cypress eventually invested about $150 million, acquiring a controlling interest in SunPower in 2002. Cypress appointed Tom Werner as the new CEO the following year.:?469?Demand for SunPower's products increased in the early 2000s, due to rising utility costs, government subsidies, and its new A-300 solar cell.:?469? In particular, SunPower grew in Germany and California, where new government subsidies were being introduced. By 2005, SunPower was not yet profitable,:?469? but had $200 million in backlogged orders. Revenues increased from $5 million in 2003 to $78.7 million in 2005.:?469?As the company was getting closer to profitability, it filed an initial public offering.:?469? The 2005 offering raised $138.6 million in funding. The following year, SunPower was profitable for the first time with $236.5 million in revenues.:?469? SunPower moved into a larger corporate headquarters location in San Jose, California and secured several contracts with major retailers for solar panel installations.:?469–70? In 2007, SunPower announced plans to expand its manufacturing facility five-fold and build a second factory.SunPower collaborated with PowerLight to develop its roofing-tile solar product called SunTile.:?469? In order to combine their R&D efforts, SunPower acquired PowerLight for $265 million, in January 2007.:?469–70? Analysts estimated the acquisition doubled SunPower's size. Shortly afterwards, PowerLight secured a $330 million contract, the largest SunPower had ever done. By 2007, half of Cypress' revenues, or $775 million, was coming from its investment in SunPower. SunPower was spun-off as a separate business from Cypress in 2008.

Recent history

SunPower acquired Sunray Renewable Energy, a solar panel company based in Italy, for $277 million in 2010, in order to expand in Europe. The following year, SunPower cut back production due to an overall market decline in solar power purchases. SunPower also announced the French oil and gas company Total was acquiring a majority interest in SunPower for $1.37 billion. In 2012, SunPower founder Richard Swanson retired, though he continued to serve on the SunPower advisory board.By 2013, SunPower's revenues rebounded and it started expanding its manufacturing facilities again. That same year, it acquired Greenbotics, which developed automated cleaning systems for solar panels, and Dragonfly, which developed solar micro-inverters. This was followed by SunPower's 2014 acquisition of SolarBridge, which developed microinverters used to improve the efficiency of solar panels.In 2014, SunPower raised $220 million from Bank of America and Merrill Lynch, in order to fund customer financing options. That same year, SunPower invested $20 million in a home energy app company called Tendril. As part of the deal, the two companies began integrating their products, so the home automation software from Tendril could time heavy energy use for when the solar panels are generating the most power.In 2019, SunPower announced it was going to spin-off its manufacturing division into a separate business in Singapore named Maxeon Solar Technologies. As part of the deal, Tianjin Zhonghuan Semiconductor Co invested $298 million for a 29% interest in Maxeon. The remaining SunPower business became focused on services, installation, batteries, and other products. In 2021, former CEO Tom Werner retired and Peter Faricy took his place as CEO of SunPower.In February 2022, SunPower investor TotalEnergies purchased SunPower's commercial and industrial divisions for $250 million, as part of SunPower's transition to focusing on residential installations. In May 2022, SunPower announced a partnership with IKEA to sell to customers in their California stores.


Mission
SunPower aims to change how our world is powered by offering the most efficient solar technology you can buy for your home or business.

Vision
At SunPower®, our vision is to change the way our world is powered. With residential and commercial solar power systems installed across six continents, we are accomplishing that goal. We also believe that real and sustainable change starts locally – in our communities and with our children – which is why we are investing in education. SunPower curricular programs, internships and partnerships help prepare students for a brighter future.

Key Team

Mr. Josh Koppelman (Exec. VP & CTO)

Mr. Derek Kuzak (Exec. VP of Supply Chain, Quality & Field Operations)

Ms. Vichheka Heang (VP, Corp. Controller & Principal Accounting Officer)

Mr. Jim Dawe (Global VP of Sales & Marketing)

Mr. Michael Weinstein (VP of Investor Relations)

Ms. June Sauvaget (Exec. VP & Chief Marketing Officer)

Ms. Eileen Evans (Exec. VP & Chief Legal Officer)


Recognition and Awards
SunPower has been recognized with numerous awards and accolades, including being named the Fastest Growing Public Company in America in 2011 by Fortune Magazine, among others.

References
SunPower
Leadership team

Mr. Peter T. Faricy (Chairman, Pres & CEO)

Mr. Guthrie Dundas (Interim Chief Financial Officer)

Mr. Douglas J. Richards (Exec. VP & Chief People Officer)

Products/ Services
Energy, Renewable Energy, Solar
Number of Employees
1,000 - 20,000
Headquarters
San Jose, California, United States
Established
1985
Company Registration
SEC CIK number: 0000867773
Net Income
100M - 500M
Revenue
Above - 1B
Traded as
SPWR
Social Media
Sun Mar 03 2024
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