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MEMC Says Third-Quarter Cash to Beat Estimate on Solar Sales

MEMC Electronic Materials Inc., the second-largest U.S. polysilicon maker, said its third-quarter cash balance will exceed its earlier forecast of $380 million, due to increasing sales from its solar unit.

The company’s SunEdison unit on Sept. 28 sold the 30-megawatt Spectrum Solar project to Southern Co. and Turner Renewable Energy, after the same group bought a 20-megawatt project in June. MEMC also got a $200 million loan “for incremental liquidity and general corporate purposes,” the St. Peters, Missouri-based company said today in a statement.

“The cash balance being so high suggests they monetized numerous solar projects in the quarter,” Jeff Osborne, an analyst with Stifel Nicolaus and Co. in New York, said in an e-mail today. MEMC guided to a sale of 40 to 60 megawatts and announced several projects in the third quarter, he said. “They have various small projects as well that likely sold and several in Canada they are trying to sell.”

MEMC fell 5.1 percent to $2.61 at the close in New York.

Hemlock Semiconductor Corp. is the biggest U.S. polysilicon producer.

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