Hoku income rises 3.4% to $303,000
Hoku Scientific Inc., which has been focusing in recent months on its new solar energy business, yesterday posted its seventh consecutive profitable quarter.
The alternative energy company had fiscal second-quarter net income of $303,000, up 3.4 percent from $293,000 a year ago. Earnings per share were 2 cents for both periods.
Revenue gained 50.5 percent to $1.9 million from $1.3 million. Total deferred revenue as of Sept. 30 was $2.5 million due to a contract with the U.S. Navy that involves the installation of 10 fuel-cell power plants in Pearl Harbor. The deferred revenue reflects customer prepayments and the company's revenue recognition policy, Hoku said.
During the quarter, the company, which was founded as a developer of fuel-cell technology, began forging ahead with its plans to manufacture and produce polysilicon and solar modules. It selected Idaho as the site of its polysilicon plant and awarded a contract to CH2M Hill Lockwood Greene to provide engineering and related services for the plant. Polysilicon is the raw material used to make photovoltaic cells for solar modules.
Last month, Hoku signed a $2 million contract with Bedford, Mass.-based Spire Corp. to buy a photovoltaic module production line for the plant capable of producing 15 megawatts of modules per year.
"Although we continue to commit resources to our fuel-cell business, due to the uncertainty in the timing of significant sales, we have begun to scale back our expenditures and investments in our fuel-cell business, and we intend to focus increasingly on our polysilicon and solar businesses," said Dustin Shindo, chairman and CEO of Hoku.