Trina Solar Limited (
Q4 2011 Earnings Call
February 23, 2012 8:00 am ET
Thomas Young – Vice President, Investor Relations
Jifan Gao – Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Terry Wang – Chief Financial Officer
Mark Kingsley – Chief Commercial Officer
Kelly Dougherty – Macquarie Research Equities
Sanjay Shrestha – Lazard Capital Markets
Daniel Ries – Collins Stewart Llc
Brandon Heiken – Credit Suisse
Lu Yeung – UBS Securities
Ramesh Misra – Brigantine Advisors
Hari Chandra Polavarapu – Auriga USA
Philip Shen – Roth Capital Partners LLC
Previous Statements by TSL
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Good morning. My name is Lisa, and I’ll be your conference operator today. At this time, I’d like to welcome everyone to the Trina Solar Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2011 Earnings Conference Call. All lines have been placed on mute to prevent any background noise. After the speakers’ remarks there will be a question-and-answer session. (Operator Instructions)
Thank you. Thomas Young, Vice President of Investor Relations. You may begin your conference.
Okay, thank you operator. Good day to all, and welcome to Trina Solar’s fourth quarter and full year 2011 earnings conference call. This is Thomas Young, Trina Solar’s Vice President of Investor Relations. With us today are Trina Solar’s Chairman and CEO, Jifan Gao; Chief Financial Officer, Terry Wang; Chief Commercial Officer, Mark Kingsley; and Senior Vice President, Operations, Gary Yu.
Before I turn the call over to Mr. Gao, may I remind our listeners that in this call, management’s prepared remarks contain forward-looking statements, which are subject to risks and uncertainties and management may make additional forward-looking statements in response to your questions. Therefore, the company claims the protection of the Safe Harbor for forward-looking statements that is contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ from those discussed today and therefore we refer you to more detailed discussion of the risks and uncertainties in the company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. In addition, any projections as to the company’s future performance represent management’s estimates as of today, February 23, 2012. Trina Solar assumes no obligation to update these projections in the future as market conditions change.
For those of you unable to listen to the entire call at this time, a recording will be available via webcast for 90 days at our Investor Relations section of our site at www.trinasolar.com.
And with that, it’s my pleasure to turn the call over to Trina Solar’s Chairman and CEO, Mr. Jifan Gao.
Thank you, Thomas, and thank you everyone for joining us today. First, I’d like to wish everyone a happy 2012, and a year (inaudible). Despite a strong demand in our existing and in new country markets, total module capacity and the high inventory levels in this country lower than market price in the fourth quarter.
As our quarterly cost reduction was not sufficient to offset low ASPs, this adversely affected our profitability. During the quarter, our end markets continued to evolve whereas our revenue outside Europe exceeded half of our global total for the first time. We believe this improved geographic sales mix, would position us later to achieve the future growth in both sales and income as cost drops and ASP stabilize.
In 2012, we are – by increasing demand from China and Europe. And the increase in either for our higher value products in Europe as well in emerging markets we are currently working and preparing for growth.
To differentiate our offerings and brand, we are focused to [some] delivery of our innovative and efficient products and service through enhancing customer value, while improving end-user solution, we are meeting our customers’ needs and are very well positioned to capture future growth opportunities in the PV market.
This solution include our Honey technology-based modules which is successful for establishing them (inaudible) of scale. Our system cost savings (inaudible) which has been very well received in three companies. Our packaged design service offerings and other new product to be not under in 2012. Looking forward, we expect the global solar industry is well poised to experience a long-term growth. We also believe future consolidation of smaller solar companies would occur, which will enhance our position as a top tier manufacturer of higher quality innovative solar products. We also received [earnings] of increasing solar demand in new market through government support or utility mix.
Solar now can clearly [position us] against our other alternative such as wind and (inaudible) user base for an increasing number of markets, and the user categories. We view this as positive trend (inaudible) for our company and the solar industry in the future.
Lastly, I wish to highlight our mission today, announced the ISO certification from the British Standards Institute. This achievement is a great [declamation] of our commitment to leading the PV industry in sustainable development.
With that, I’d like to turn the call to our CFO, Terry Wang to share our fourth quarter 2011 financial results. Terry?
Thank you, Mr. Gao, and welcome everyone to our earnings conference call. I’d like to present an overview of our fourth quarter and full year financial results followed by the company’s guidance for the first quarter and the full year of 2012.
Due to the growth of the worldwide module capacity, and peak third quarter inventory levels, the fourth quarter saw significantly lower product prices. Though our costs came down substantially due to the low cash costs and the inventory walk through, which I will discuss later, reductions were not sufficient enough to offset the fall of ASP in this quarter, which inevitably affect our margin, and adversely affect our bottom line results.
We have achieved in this quarter, roughly shipment of a 425 megawatt, which exceeded our upper range of guidance by 21%, translated to a total net revenue of $435 million in the fourth quarter, quarter-on-quarter volume increase approximately 16%. Reflecting market ASP reductions, our gross profit was $31 million, a decrease of approximately 40% from third quarter. The overall gross margin was 7.1% below the company’s previous guidance of approximately 10%. And that will increase the cost control measures taken in the fourth quarter, will incur our 21.6% increase in operating expenses to $93.9 million, which include accounts receivables, provisions of $16.3 million, and a $9.1 million provisions for earlier polysilicon supply (inaudible), one of the which to Anatone Solar.