COVID-19 response: SunPower cuts salaries, expenses to save nearly $50 million

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SunPower Corp. just announced a number of moves to manage its business during these COVID-uncertain times. The company believes these actions will position it well for when the solar industry returns to strong growth.

(Here’s our most recent roundup of solar-related COVID-19 news tidbits).

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“During these unprecedented times, our primary focus remains on the safety and well-being of our employees, working closely with our partners and continuing to serve our customers,” said Tom Werner, SunPower CEO and chairman of the board. “We are committed to taking every action within our control to manage our business and serve our customers both now and when the industry recovers.”

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Werner says they are continuing to invest in their product line, including their storage and digital solutions, and that they do remain on track to complete their planned company split.

Immediate moves

SunPower has immediately implemented a number of initiatives to manage its cost structure including:

  • a reduction in management salaries,
  • the freezing of all hiring and merit increases as well as
  • a reduction in capital expenditures.

The company expects these actions will result in savings of up to $50 million in 2020. The company is also reviewing all discretionary spending as well as other programs to further reduce costs in the near-term and remains comfortable with its liquidity position.

Additionally, at this time, the company cannot fully assess the impact of the COVID-19 crisis in both its U.S. and international businesses. As a consequence, the company is withdrawing its previously provided fiscal year 2020 financial guidance. The company expects to provide additional details on its updated 2020 forecast on its first quarter 2020 earnings call in May.

The company’s planned split into two independent, publicly traded companies, expected to close by the end of the second quarter of 2020, is dependent on the timing of regulatory approvals and the satisfaction of certain closing conditions.

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