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Siemens lets the sun go down on solar power

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Siemens lets the sun go down on solar power
Photo: DPA
11:32 CEST+02:00
German engineering giant Siemens is abandoning its solar energy business in favour of wind and hydropower, the company announced in a statement Monday.

The move was necessary, the firm said, because, "changed framework conditions, lower growth and strong price pressure in the solar markets,” meant the business sector was not meeting its expected goals.

The company will sell Solel Solar Systems, which it acquired in 2009 for $418 million, and the photovoltaic business of its solar and hydro division.

The solar and hydro division generated revenue "in the low triple-digit millions" in the business year ended September 30, 2012, and has "around 800 employees," the company said.

“The global market for solar thermal energy has fallen from four gigawatts to recently a little more than one gigawatt,” said Michael Süß, a member of Siemens’ board of directors and the CEO of its energy sector, in a statement. “In the future, specialized providers will be able to play off their strengths here.”

Siemens CEO Peter Löscher just announced a two-year savings programme, because of weak economic growth, during which all unprofitable enterprises will go under the microscope.

The company is in the midst of talks with interested parties about selling its solar businesses, which will continue operating until a sale is final. Siemens will retain its hydropower business, it confirmed.

DAPD/DPA/AFP/The Local/mbw

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