US thin-film photovoltaics (PV) maker First Solar Inc (NASDAQ:FSLR) today announced the acquisition of perovskite technology specialist Evolar AB to accelerate its efforts to develop next-generation tandem PV technology.
First Solar is buying the Swedish company, which is majority owned by Norwegian renewables investor Magnora ASA (OSL:MGN), for up to USD 80 million (EUR 73m), including USD 38 million at closing and another up to USD 42 million to be paid subject to certain technical milestones being met in the future.
According to First Solar chief executive Mark Widmar, high-efficiency tandem PV modules will define the future and speed up decarbonisation.
Set up in 2019, Evolar focused on developing solutions, including manufacturing equipment, for commercialising a tandem solar technology using perovskite thin films. Following the deal, Evolar’s laboratory in Uppsala will continue to conduct research activity, with about 30 of the company’s research and development (R&D) staff to move to First Solar, expanding its R&D footprint to Europe.
“By connecting our advanced research lab in California with Europe and building the Western Hemisphere’s largest PV R&D innovation center in Ohio, we are effectively establishing and leading a uniquely transatlantic effort to develop and commercialise the next generation of photovoltaics,” commented Widmar.
First Solar is investing up to USD 370 million in a new R&D innovation centre in Perrysburg, Ohio, which is scheduled to be completed in 2024.
(USD 1 = EUR 0.915)
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