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SMA Solar Sees Full-Year Loss on Weaker European Inverter Sales

SMA Solar Technology, the biggest producer of inverters used in power distribution, cut its sales target and forecast a loss for the year on weak European demand.

SMA estimates sales of 900 million euros ($1.2 billion) to 1 billion euros, down from as much as 1.3 billion euros, it said today in a statement. The company expects to report a loss of 80 million to 90 million euros, compared with the prior best case of breaking even before one-time items.

The board expects sales to recover to 1 billion euros to 1.3 billion euros and regain its profitability in 2014, it said.

“We have a strongly declining demand in our core markets in Europe that cannot be compensated by the new Asian and American markets,” Chief Executive Officer Pierre-Pascal Urbon said in the statement. The company, based in Niestetal, Germany, said the cost of restructuring Zeversolar, a Chinese inverter maker it agreed to buy in 2012, is also weighing on earnings.

SMA has seen sales drop since 2010 on concerns that Europe would impose anti-dumping fees on Chinese solar products.

The solar company said in July that it would eliminate 700 full-time jobs in Germany by the end of next year to cut costs.

Inverters are used to convert energy from solar panels into power that can be transmitted on an electricity grid.

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