Hoku revenue to hit low end of guidance
Hoku Scientific Inc., the Kapolei-based company that re-created itself to capitalize on the worldwide shortage of polysilicon for solar panels, said yesterday its fiscal 2008 second-quarter revenue will be at the low end of its previous guidance.
Hoku, which is building a polysilicon plant in Pocatello, Idaho, said it expects revenue of about $239,000 and a net loss of between $1 million and $1.2 million for the period ended Sept. 30. The actual results are slated to be announced Tuesday.
Analysts had been expecting a loss of $1.3 million with revenue of $350,000.
Hoku said in July it was forecasting revenue for the quarter to be in the range of $200,000 to $500,000, and that it expected an undetermined loss for the quarter.
Hoku, which has de-emphasized its fuel-cell technology business to focus on polysilicon and, to a lesser extent, solar-panel installation, also said the revised cost of the Idaho plant will be less than $300 million, versus $260 million originally estimated.
Darryl Nakamoto, chief financial officer for Hoku, said yesterday Hoku now expects the capacity of its plant to range between 2,000 and 2,500 metric tons per year. Its June projections called for a capacity of up to 3,000 metric tons.
Hoku Chief Executive Dustin Shindo said that grading and excavating of the Pocatello property is due to begin this month.
Also yesterday, subsidiary Hoku Materials announced it had amended its polysilicon reactor contract with GEC Graeber Engineering Consultants GmbH, and MSA Apparatus Construction for Chemical Equipment Ltd. to include an option for Hoku to purchase additional chemical reactors for 6.7 million euros, or $9.5 million, that could produce up to an additional 500 metric tons of polysilicon annually.
If Hoku exercises the option, it would increase Hoku's polysilicon production capacity to 2,500 metric tons per year.
Hoku Materials also amended its polysilicon sales agreement with Japan-based Sanyo Electric Co. Ltd. that extends Hoku's date to complete the financing to construct Hoku's polysilicon plant until Dec. 31, 2007.
The Sanyo agreement, which had been due to expire today after being extended once, would have allowed either side to walk away from the $370 million deal.