By Anonymous Americus
By now we’ve heard from practically everyone – experts and layman alike – why Solyndra declared bankruptcy. Everyone, that is, except the management and owners of Solyndra.
Although the company’s executive management was called before Congress to testify about the bankruptcy, they declined to answer any questions, citing their fifth amendment protection against self-incrimination.
Most observers claim it was the fall in silicon prices that made the company’s business model unsustainable. According to the New York Times:
“Solyndra’s unique tube-shaped solar panels — which harvest early morning and evening light for electricity instead of just midday sun — do not rely on silicon. But it assumed its competitors would continue to pay a relatively high price for silicon, allowing Solyndra to charge the premium required to turn a profit on its panels. It was an assumption Obama officials bought into. But industry experts outside the federal government, going back to 2008, were predicting silicon prices were headed for a steep fall.”
However, no-one really knows if this is true or not. What was the sales price of Solyndra’s panels? What did their order book look like? How many long-term supply contracts were signed with European developers, with whom the Solyndra product was so popular? Were buyers also attracted to the energy-harvesting capabilities, portability and ease of installation of Solyndra panels versus silicon PV? Only the privately-held company’s executive management and owners know the answers to those questions, and they are not telling. [Read more…]