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© Panasonic - for illustrative purposes Electronics Production | February 26, 2020

Panasonic to exit US solar manufacturing

Panasonic says it will begin to wind down U.S. production of photovoltaic cells and modules at Gigafactory New York in Buffalo, New York.

By the end of May 2020, Panasonic will cease its U.S. solar manufacturing operations and is scheduled to exit the facility by the end of September 2020. The company says in a press release that it is supporting Tesla in its efforts to identify and hire qualified applicants from Panasonic’s impacted workforce. Tesla plans to hire qualified applicants to new positions needed to support the solar and energy manufacturing operations in Buffalo. This decision is part of the a broader streamlining of Panasonic's global solar operations. According to Tesla, this does not impact Tesla’s future solar growth business plans. Optimising the development and production capability of its photovoltaic business, Panasonic will integrate solar into its energy solutions business. The company stresses that this decision wont impact its and Tesla’s partnership in Nevada. The two companies will continue their electric vehicle battery work taking place at Tesla’s Gigafactory outside of Reno, Nevada. Panasonic will also continue to sell Panasonic brand solar panels to U.S. customers through its own distribution network. “The decision to transition away from U.S. solar manufacturing in Buffalo aligns with our global solar strategy, our efforts to optimize development and production, and supports Tesla’s long-term plans to continue and expand its operations,” says Shinichiro Nakajima, director of Panasonic’s Energy System Strategic Business, in the press release Panasonic says will provide affected employees with a severance package that includes outplacement support. Tesla hopes to hire as many qualified Panasonic applicants as possible to help fill job openings for its growing operations in Buffalo.
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June 09 2020 11:27 am V18.6.11-1