Suntech: Convertible Loan Agreement with IFC
Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd., the world's largest manufacturer of crystalline silicon photovoltaic (PV) modules, announced today that it has signed a US$50 million convertible loan agreement with IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, to support Suntech's transition to the high efficiency Pluto technology and debt refinancing requirements. Suntech is permitted to draw the loan upon satisfaction of various conditions precedent, which Suntech believes it will satisfy within 30 days.
The convertible loan has a fixed rate coupon of 5.0% per annum payable on June 15 and December 15 in each year. If not converted, the loan will be repayable in full 7 years after the date of drawdown. The conversion price of the loan is US$18.00 per American depositary share (ADS), which was set at a premium over the average trading price over 20 trading days immediately prior to notice that IFC's board had approved the convertible loan.
"We are pleased that IFC, a world class investment institution that supports sustainable development, has agreed to provide Suntech with a convertible loan of $50 million," said Dr. Zhengrong Shi, Suntech's Chairman and CEO. "These additional funds will strengthen Suntech's financial position and support our transition to the high efficiency Pluto technology as we progress towards our goal of providing grid parity solar solutions."
"IFC is pleased to support Suntech, one of the leaders in the solar PV industry," said Randall Riopelle, Manager, Global Manufacturing & Services Department. "We are pleased to be partnering with a company focused on developing best in class technology and which has demonstrated a firm commitment to the highest corporate responsibility standards. We look forward to working with Suntech as solar energy becomes an increasingly important source of renewable energy for China and for the world."
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development, mobilizing private capital, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments totaled $16.2 billion in fiscal 2008, a 34 percent increase over the previous year. For more information, please visit http://www.ifc.org .
Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd. (NYSE: STP - News) is the world's leading solar energy company as measured by production output of crystalline silicon solar modules. Suntech designs, develops, manufactures, and markets premium-quality, high-output, cost-effective and environmentally friendly solar products for electric power applications in the residential, commercial, industrial, and public utility sectors. Suntech's patent-pending Pluto technology for crystalline silicon solar cells improves power output by up to 12% compared to conventional production methods.
Suntech also offers one of the broadest ranges of building-integrated solar products under the MSK Solar Design Line(TM). Suntech designs and delivers commercial and utility scale solar power systems through its wholly owned subsidiary Suntech Energy Engineering and will own and operate projects greater than 10 megawatts in the United States through Gemini Solar Development Company, a joint venture with Renewable Ventures, a Fotowatio company. With regional headquarters in China, Switzerland and San Francisco and sales offices worldwide, Suntech is passionate about improving the environment we live in and dedicated to developing advanced solar solutions that enable sustainable development. For more information, please visit http://www.suntech-power.com .
Safe Harbor Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements. These statements constitute "forward-looking" statements within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements can be identified by terminology such as "will," "expects," "anticipates," "future," "intends," "plans," "believes," "estimates" and similar statements, and include the ability of Suntech to satisfy conditions precedent to draw the convertible loan; the ability of such funds to support Suntech's growth initiatives; and Suntech's ability to provide grid parity solutions. Such statements involve certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. Further information regarding these and other risks is included in Suntech's filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including its annual report on Form 20-F. Suntech does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required under applicable law.
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Investor Relations Director
Suntech Power Holdings, Co. Ltd.