Wednesday, November 10, 2010

"Clean Energy Targeted for Mergers After $400 Billion Evaporates" (AMSC; CREE; GE; SI; UTX)

I'm not much help here, I tend to favor companies that have the wherewithal to make acquisitions. When a deal is announced it is uncanny how many times I'm initially on the wrong side of the arb.
Right now the only possibilities that come to mind are companies with decent intellectual property; Cree in LED lighting; American Superconductor in transmission and turbines or some of the Chinese solar's as the government there orders consolidation in an oversupplied market.
A solid piece of reporting from Bloomberg:
Wind turbine and solar panel makers may be vulnerable to takeovers after clean-energy stocks lost almost $400 billion in value this year and factories expanded faster than product demand, investment bankers said.
UBS AG said Gamesa Corporacion Tecnologica SA became a target in October after the Spanish wind-turbine maker fell by more than one-half and cut its 2010 sales forecast by about 15 percent. Trina Solar Ltd., a Chinese solar-cell producer, said it’s interested in teaming with or investing in developers in Europe, where solar-panel makers have extra capacity.

“It’s just a matter of time before we see more consolidation,” Marc Schmid, head of renewable energy investment banking at Credit Suisse AG in London, said in an interview. “With potential oversupply in solar and wind, the pressure may be rising and that could trigger more activity.”

China’s Shanghai Electric Group Co. and Dongfang Electric Corp. may follow General Electric Co., United Technologies Corp. and Siemens AG in buying companies to enter markets, analysts said. The biggest manufacturers are jockeying for position in clean power and energy efficiency that will need $9.7 trillion in capital investment through 2020, HSBC Plc has estimated.

United Technologies, the U.S. jet-engine maker, last month agreed to buy the Clipper Windpower Plc stock it didn’t already own in a transaction that valued the purchased company at 139.5 million pounds ($222 million). Officials at Shanghai Electric and Dongfang couldn’t be reached for comment.

In the same month, GE acquired the waste-heat power generation business of closely held Calnetix Inc. and announced a partnership with Japan’s Showa Shell Sekiyu KK to make solar panels. Japanese liquid-crystal display maker Sharp Corp. said last week it completed the purchase of U.S. solar-project developer Recurrent Energy LLC for $305 million.

Siemens AG bought Israeli solar-thermal developer Solel Solar Systems Ltd. last year for $418 million.

Oversized Factories
Global annual manufacturing capacity for solar panels may reach 23,500 megawatts next year, exceeding demand by almost 40 percent, according to John Hardy, a solar analyst at Gleacher & Co. in Connecticut. Wind turbine makers will increase capacity to 64,200 megawatts, 30 percent more than expected orders, Bloomberg New Energy Finance forecasts....MUCH MORE