Canadian Solar Plunges as Profit Drops 68% Amid Yieldco Plan

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Canadian Solar Inc., the world’s third largest photovoltaic panel maker, declined the most in more than six years after its second-quarter earnings slumped 68 percent.

The company plunged 18 percent to $20.20 at the close in New York, the most since December 2008.

Net income in the second quarter was $17.9 million, or 31 cents a share, down from $55.8 million, or 95 cents, a year earlier, the Guelph, Ontario-based company said Tuesday.

Canadian Solar said in March it’s planning to form a separate company to own and operate completed power plants. This model, generally known as a yieldco, often leads to lower profit during the transition because the company holds on to assets instead of selling them.

That transition is “on track,” Chief Executive Officer Shawn Qu said on a call with analysts Tuesday, and he expects to complete the yieldco by early 2016

Yieldcos are increasingly common in the renewable energy industry, with at least 15 initial public offerings since early 2013. They let companies like Canadian Solar sell completed power plants, and help lower the cost of capital for new projects. There’s some concern that their growing number is creating competition to buy wind and solar farms and driving up prices.

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