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SolarWorld to Consolidate, Close California Production

In what seems to be a rough few weeks for the solar industry, SolarWorld announced plans to shut down its Camarillo, Calif. manufacturing plant and several aging German lines.

This news comes after several unsettling announcements, including German-based Solon closing its manufacturing operations in the U.S and Solyndra and Evergreen Solar declaring bankruptcy in August.

But SolarWorld isn’t going anywhere — it will focus production efforts at its larger facility in Hillsboro, Oregon. Of the more than 300 workers in California, 186 will lose their jobs, though some may be transferred to the Oregon plant. The remaining 114 employees will continue marketing and sales operations at the Camarillo site.

Since its creation in 2007, the $400 million, 500-MW capacity Hillsboro plant has grown to more than 1,000 employees.

The U.S. and German consolidation was set in motion to better compete with overseas players and manage price reductions. “It means that we offer quality from Germany and quality made in the U.S. that is competitive,” said SolarWorld CEO Frank Asbeck in a statement.


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