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Swedish Solar Manufacturer Midsummer Secures €8 Million Investment for Italian CIGS Thin-Film Factory

published: 2024-07-02 17:38

Recently, Swedish thin-film solar manufacturer Midsummer announced it has secured approximately €8 million ($8.6 million) in funding to support its copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) thin-film cell manufacturing project in Italy. This investment comes from Italian investment agency Invitalia and is the latest in a series of investments in Midsummer's factory in the Puglia region of Italy.

Prior to this financing, Invitalia injected an initial investment of around €6.4 million last year. In 2021, Midsummer also received approximately $44 million in grants and loans from Italian authorities to support the development and construction of this thin-film factory.

In addition to the aforementioned financial support, Midsummer states it will receive further subsidies from the Puglia regional authorities and final production-related investments by 2025.

Midsummer states that all production equipment for the factory is now in place, and the factory is "ready to scale up production as sales increase and as needed to complete factory and product certification."

Eric Jaremalm, CEO of Midsummer, commented: "The Puglia factory will make us a leader in thin-film solar cells in Europe, supplying solar products to many weak industrial roofs in Europe that cannot bear the weight of silicon modules. This is the most interesting market segment we have identified, with an expected market size of 25GW (worth €20-30 billion) annually."

Additionally, Midsummer plans to construct a 200MW CIGS thin-film cell factory in Flen, Sweden. In July 2023, this factory received funding from the EU Innovation Fund, along with European solar manufacturers Meyer Burger and Norsun.

This factory is scheduled to begin production in 2026. Both the Italian and Swedish factories will focus on the specialized residential and commercial and industrial (C&I) rooftop markets, particularly targeting roofs that cannot support the weight of traditional silicon modules.

Specialized manufacturing is touted as a potential way to protect Europe's solar PV production industry. PV Tech explored this topic at last month's Intersolar Europe trade show, hearing viewpoints advocating for emerging technologies and products tailored for specific markets in European manufacturing.

However, given China's absolute dominance in the large-scale silicon solar supply chain, many other voices remain skeptical about the prospects for local manufacturing in Europe.


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