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CANADIAN SOLAR : Reports Third Quarter 2009 Results and Issues 2010 Guidance

11/17/2009 | 07:05am EST

ONTARIO, Canada, Nov. 17 /PRNewswire-Asia-FirstCall/ -- Canadian Solar Inc. (the "Company", "Canadian Solar" or "we") (Nasdaq: CSIQ) today announced its unaudited financial results for the third quarter of 2009 ended September 30, 2009 and its outlook for the fourth quarter of 2009 and the full year 2010.

Net revenues for the third quarter of 2009 were $213.1 million, compared to net revenues of $114.2 million for the second quarter of 2009 and $252.4 million for the third quarter of 2008.

Net income for the third quarter of 2009 was $25.3 million, or $0.69 per diluted share, compared to $17.7 million, or $0.49 per diluted share, for the second quarter of 2009 and $11.1 million, or $0.31 per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2008.

Shipments for the third quarter of 2009 were 102.6 MW, compared to shipments of 48.2 MW for the second quarter of 2009 and 60 MW for the third quarter of 2008. Third quarter 2009 sales came from all geographic markets important to the solar industry, with Europe continuing to be the Company's largest contributing geographic market. Sales in that region grew strongly in the quarter, increasing 179% from the second quarter of 2009.

Dr. Shawn Qu, Chairman and CEO of Canadian Solar, commented: "We broke our previous records on both MW shipment volumes and net profit in this quarter. The significant increases in sales and earnings were the result of the successful implementation of our global sales strategy combined with our strong brand name recognition, cost control and effective supply chain management. Our flexible vertical integration model allowed us to capture the sharp increase in market demand during the quarter and to raise our module sales faster than the growth of our internal cell capacity. Our R&D capability is another important competitive differentiator for Canadian Solar. During the quarter, three of our solar module products recorded the highest scores for P-type solar modules during the PV USA (PTC) tests, which are mandatory for the California Solar Initiatives. Subsequent to the quarter end, we pre-launched our high-output premium products using our enhanced selective emitter technology. These products are expected to have monocrystalline cell conversion efficiencies of 18.5% and multicrystalline cell efficiencies of 17%. We are also in the process of testing a cost effective two-axis tracker."

Arthur Chien, CFO of Canadian Solar, noted: "We are pleased that we were able to aggressively grow our top line while delivering an 11.9% net margin. We remain focused on managing all operating and financing costs as we work to improve profitability. We expect the expansion of our internal cell facility in H1 2010 will help us to further offset ongoing industry pricing pressure, while at the same time increasing our manufacturing process control. Importantly, our disciplined management of our balance sheet continues to give us superior operating leverage and a low cost of financing. The recent successful closure of our follow-on stock offering in October further strengthened our balance sheet and prepares us for the Company's expected growth in 2010."

                                Revenue by Geography
                       3Q 2009            2Q 2009             3Q 2008
    Region      US$ million   %    US$ million    %    US$ million   %

    Asia            13.6     6.4%      31.1     27.2%     16.4      6.5%
    Europe         186.6    87.6%      66.9     58.6%    222.4     88.1%
    America         12.9     6.0%      16.2     14.2%     13.5      5.4%
    Total          213.1   100.0%     114.2    100.0%    252.4    100.0%

    Recent Developments
    -- We completed batch testing of our enhanced selective emitter cells and
       pre-launched our first commercially available 250/260 W modules at the
       Solar Power International conference in Anaheim.  We have begun
       converting the first cell line over to our proprietary enhanced
       selective emitter technology and expect to begin limited commercial
       delivery of 260 W enhanced selective emitter modules early in 2010.

    -- We have begun field-testing a two-axis tracker, which we believe will
       be more effective but considerably less expensive than similar products
       currently available on the market.

    -- Completed a follow-on public offering of 6.9 million shares on October
       21, 2009, which raised net proceeds of approximately $103.3 million.

    -- Canadian Solar Japan recently received full JPEC certifications for our
       residential roof solar systems and JET certification for our solar
       modules. We have started to deliver these products to our Japanese

    -- Appointed Arthur Chien, our CFO, as our new Compliance Officer,
       effective November 2, 2009.

    -- Appointed Charlotte Xi Klein as VP of Global Operations, effective
       November 2, 2009.  Ms. Klein joined Canadian Solar as corporate
       controller in 2007 and most recently served as VP of Finance and
       Compliance Officer, where she was also instrumental in establishing
       Canadian Solar's overseas operations during the past 12 months.  Prior
       to joining Canadian Solar, she spent 18 years in the United States,
       where she obtained her MBA and MA degrees and worked her way up from
       cost accounting to controllership in sizable corporate manufacturing
       facilities, such as Saint-Gobain Corporation and Armstrong World
       Industries.  She was previously a financial executive at ARAMARK
       Corporation, a Fortune 500 company.  She is also a member of the AICPA
       and has been a Texas-licensed CPA since 1996.

    -- Completed our recent expansion of solar module manufacturing capacity
       to 820 MW, which we believe is the world's third largest.

    -- On track in our Phase III solar cell capacity expansion, which we
       expect to bring our cell capacity from 270MW to 420MW by December 2009.

Outlook for Q409 and 2010

The outlook below is based on the Company's current views with respect to operating and market conditions, its current order book and customer' forecasts, which are subject to change. The risks to our guidance also include changes in product pricing, availability and pricing of feedstock, and the project financing environment.

We are reiterating our fourth quarter 2009 guidance of shipments of approximately 128 MW to 138 MW, with gross margin expected to be in the high- teens on a percentage basis. We expect shipments of approximately 295 MW to 305 MW for the full year 2009.

For the full year 2010, we believe our shipments will be in the range of 600 MW to 700 MW. We believe that the demand for our high quality solar modules will come from all major markets, including Germany, Italy, the U.S., the Czech Republic, South Korea and Spain. We also expect strong growth from our newer markets, such as Canada, Japan and China.

Given the demand forecast, the Company plans to increase our solar module production capacity from today's 820 MW to 1 GW by the end of April 2010, and to increase our internal cell production capacity from 420 MW to 700 MW by June 2010. We also intend to slightly increase our internal ingot and wafer capacity in 2010.

Under this expansion plan, we expect to produce approximately 450 MW to 500 MW of solar cells internally, while outsourcing approximately 200 MW to 250 MW from our long-term solar cell partners.

By achieving a higher ratio of internal cell production compared to external sourcing, we expect to sustain gross margins in the high teens and maintain a healthy net profit margin.

Dr. Shawn Qu, Chairman and CEO, remarked: "We believe that we have reasonable visibility for our 2010 forecast based on our channel checks. We expect to more than double our shipments in 2010 and are preparing our capacity expansion accordingly. This rapid growth is driven by our sales strategy of combining a superior product with attractive pricing and value added services. Furthermore, we intend to continue to aggressively develop new markets for our products. We were successful in our strategy in the U.S., South Korea and the Czech Republic this year, and have targeted other new markets such as Canada, Japan and China for 2010. We believe this strategic diversification will significantly reduce our exposure to the traditional solar markets such as Germany, Italy and Spain and allow us to build a solid foundation for continued growth and market share expansion."

Investor Conference Call / Webcast Details

The dial-in number for the live audio call, which will begin today, Tuesday, November 17, 2009 at 8:00 a.m. U.S. Eastern Time (9:00 p.m. November 17, 2009 in Hong Kong), is +1-617-213-8059. The conference call passcode is 23659019. A live webcast of the conference call will also be available on our website at http://www.canadiansolar.com .

A replay of the call will be available approximately one hour after the conclusion of the live call through 12:00 p.m. on November 24, 2009, U.S. Eastern Time (1:00 a.m., November 25, 2009 in Hong Kong) by telephone at +1-617-801-6888. To access the replay, use passcode 19894949. A webcast replay will also be available at http://www.canadiansolar.com .

About Canadian Solar Inc. (NASDAQ: CSIQ)

Canadian Solar Inc. is a leading vertically integrated provider of ingot, wafer, solar cell, solar module and other solar applications. Canadian Solar designs, manufactures and delivers solar products and solar systems for on-grid and off-grid use to customers worldwide. Canadian Solar is one of the world's largest solar module producers by manufacturing capacity. With operations in North America, Europe and Asia, Canadian Solar provides premium quality, cost-effective and environmentally-friendly solar solutions to support global sustainable development. For more information, visit http://www.canadiansolar.com .

Safe Harbor/Forward-Looking Statements:

Certain statements in this press release including statements regarding our expected future shipment volumes, gross and net margins, manufacturing capacities and cell conversion efficiencies, are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. These statements are made under the "Safe Harbor" provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by such terms as "believes," "expects," "anticipates," "intends," "estimates," the negative of these terms, or other comparable terminology. Factors that could cause actual results to differ include general business and economic conditions and the state of the solar industry; governmental support for the deployment of solar power; future available supplies of high-purity silicon; demand for end-use products by consumers and inventory levels of such products in the supply chain; changes in demand from significant customers, including customers of our silicon materials sales; changes in demand from major markets such as Germany; changes in customer order patterns; changes in product mix; capacity utilization; level of competition; pricing pressure and declines in average selling prices; delays in new product introduction; continued success in technological innovations and delivery of products with the features customers demand; shortage in supply of materials or capacity requirements; availability of financing; exchange rate fluctuations; litigation and other risks as described in the Company's SEC filings, including its annual report on Form 20-F originally filed on June 8, 2009, as amended by its report on Form 20-F/A filed on October 14, 2009. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in the forward looking statements are reasonable, it cannot guarantee future results, level of activity, performance, or achievements. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. All information provided in this press release is as of today's date, unless otherwise stated, and Canadian Solar undertakes no duty to update such information, except as required under applicable law.

                             Canadian Solar Inc.
          Unaudited Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations
        (In Thousands of U.S. Dollars, Except Share And Per Share Data
                         And Unless Otherwise Stated)

       Item         3Q 2009      2Q 2009      3Q 2008     2009 1-9    2008 1-9
    Net revenues   $213,126     $114,176     $252,362     $376,767    $636,183
    Cost of
     revenues       178,392       91,096      213,256      322,848     535,765
    Gross profit     34,734       23,080       39,106       53,919     100,418
     expenses         6,564        3,229        3,482       11,674       8,839
    General and
     expenses         7,327        6,410        9,267       18,255      21,178
    Research and
     expenses           964          530          603        1,963       1,352
     expenses        14,855       10,169       13,352       31,892      31,369
    Income from
     operations      19,879       12,911       25,754       22,027      69,049
     expenses        (2,498)      (1,913)      (3,385)      (6,665)     (9,717)
     income             756        2,849          819        4,168         979
    Gain on debt
     extinguishment      --           --           --           --       2,430
     expenses            --           --           --           --     (10,170)
     (Loss) on
     derivatives     (1,381)      (1,050)       7,424        8,935       7,424
     (loss)           9,665        6,038      (17,295)      12,827      (9,602)
    Income before
     taxes           26,421       18,835       13,317       41,292      50,393
    Income tax       (1,103)      (1,163)      (2,251)      (3,086)     (8,681)
    Net income      $25,318      $17,672      $11,066      $38,206     $41,712
    Less: net
     to non
     interest           (25)          --           --          (25)         --
    Net income
     to CSI
     stockholders   $25,343      $17,672      $11,066      $38,231     $41,712
    Basic earnings
     per share        $0.71        $0.50        $0.32        $1.07       $1.39
    Basic weighted
     shares      35,765,185   35,699,453   34,802,363   35,704,895  30,110,549
     per share        $0.69        $0.49        $0.31        $1.06       $1.34
     shares      36,571,071   36,141,329   35,630,794   36,126,760  31,197,198

Note: The third quarter 2008 net profit was decreased by $4,841 and the nine months to September 30, 2008 net profit was increased by $1.1 million, as compared to the third quarter 2008 and the nine months to September 30, 2008 net profit as per prior press release announcements due to retrospective application of FASB Staff Position-APB 14-1 on January 1, 2009.

                             Canadian Solar Inc.
               Unaudited Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets
                        (In Thousands of U.S. Dollars)

                                                September 30,     December 31,
                    Item                            2009              2008
    Current assets
    Cash and cash equivalents                     $103,094          $115,661
    Restricted cash                                132,620            20,622
    Accounts receivable, net of allowance
     for doubtful accounts                         227,704            51,611
    Inventories                                    144,351            92,683
    Value added tax recoverable                     31,306            15,900
    Advances to suppliers                           17,399            24,654
    Foreign currency derivative
     assets                                             --             6,974
    Prepaid and other current assets                13,744            10,910
    Current assets - subtotal                      670,218           339,015
    Property, plant and equipment, net             207,655           165,542
    Intangible assets                                  202               263
    Advances to suppliers                           44,481            43,087
    Prepaid land use right                          12,599            12,782
    Investment                                       4,171             3,000
    Deferred tax assets - non current                7,912             6,966
    Total assets                                   947,238           570,655
    Liabilities and equity
    Current liabilities
    Short term borrowings                          321,962           110,665
    Accounts payable                               156,487            29,957
    Other payables                                  26,712            24,043
    Advances from customers                          1,839             3,571
    Amounts due to related parties                     356                94
    Foreign currency derivative liabilities          1,850                --
    Other current liabilities                        6,470             4,333
    Current liabilities - subtotal                 515,676           172,663
    Accrued warranty costs                          14,282            10,847
    Liability for uncertain tax positions           10,384             8,704
    Convertible notes                                  857               830
    Long term borrowings                            30,751            45,357
    Total liabilities                              571,950           238,401
    Common shares                                  395,425           395,154
    Additional paid in capitals                    (62,411)          (66,705)
    Retained earnings (Accumulated deficit)         27,127           (11,104)
    Accumulated other comprehensive
     income                                         15,161            14,909
    Total CSI stockholders' equity                 375,302           332,254
    Non-controlling interest                           (14)               --
    Total equity                                   375,288           332,254
    Total liabilities and equity                  $947,238           570,655

SOURCE Canadian Solar Inc.

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