First Solar Boosting Solar-Panel Production to Meet Higher Demand

U.S. solar company First Solar Inc. (FSLR) said Wednesday that it will make more solar panels this year than earlier planned due to rising demand.

The Arizona company said it plans to make 1,800 to 1,900 megawatts of panels this year, up from its plan in May to cut production to 1,400 to 1,700 megawatts. That compares to 2,400 megawatts of production in 2011.

First Solar Chief Executive Jim Hughes said the company will make more products to meet higher-than-expected demand from customers primarily in Europe and India.

First Solar reported a second-quarter profit of $111 million, or $1.27 a share, up 82% from $61.1 million, or 70 cents a share, a year earlier. Net sales jumped 80% to $957.3 million, primarily due to an increase in the number and size of projects under construction for which revenue could be booked in the second quarter.

Share of First Solar were up 13% at $16.70 in after-hours trade.

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