S.A.G. Sticks With 2010 Profit Target, Helped by Sales Abroad

S.A.G. Solarstrom AG, the German solar-energy developer that’s gained 37 percent in the stock market this year, said it’s sticking to a previous full-year profit target as it expands sales abroad.

The Freiburg, Germany-based company expects earnings before interest and tax of between 8 million euros ($10.2 million) and 11 million euros for 2010, the company said today in a statement on the Frankfurt exchange newswire. First-half revenue more than doubled to 85 million euros, with foreign sales accounting for 38 percent of the total compared with 20 percent a year earlier.

Germany is on track to install a record number of solar panels this year, maintaining its position as the world’s largest market. Guaranteed rates for sun-generated electricity were cut earlier in the year and are set to decline again at the end of the year, which may slow growth in demand next year, analysts have said.

S.A.G. said it held back from starting some solar power projects in Germany that would have required more personnel and start-up costs. It “deliberately avoided additional deadweight effects in Germany, so as not to jeopardize foreign expansion and thus the steady increase in corporate growth.”

The company fell short of its “long-term” profit margin target of at least 5 percent, recording earnings before interest tax as a percentage of sales of 3 percent in the first six months.

The shares declined as much as 3 percent and reversed direction to trade unchanged at 4.75 euros as of 10:24 a.m. local time, valuing the company at almost 60 million euros.

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