NEW YORK (
(FSLR - Get Report), one of the largest alternative energy developers, has posted a solid first quarter with earnings nearly double what analysts expected and sales closing in on the billion-dollar mark.
Shares are popping in post-market trading, gaining 4.1% to reach $70.20.
Over its March-ending quarter, the Arizona-based business earned $1.10 a share, or $112 million, compared to 69 cents a share, or $61.5 million, a year earlier. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters forecast earnings of 56 cents a share, or $51.2 million in net income.
WATCH: More market update videos on TheStreet TV | More videos from Kori Hale
In addition to better management of project costs, profits were boosted by 26% growth on the company's top-line. Revenue of $950.1 million blew past estimates of $837.95 million.
>>Read More: First Solar Earnings to Shine a Light on Slow Progress
First Solar's momentum is set to continue with the company guiding for higher full-year earnings between $2.40 and $2.80 a share, up from a previous range of $2.20 to $2.60 a share. Analysts had expected $2.49 a share over the year to December.
Earlier, First Solar announced its contract with EDF Renewable Energy in California. As part of the agreement, the company will act as engineer for a 19.76 megawatt project and two 23 megawatt projects in Central California.
--Written by Keris Alison Lahiff in New York.
Check Out Our Best Services for Investors
Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.
- Model portfolio
- Stocks trading below $10
- Intraday trade alerts