Sharp Seeks Sale of U.S Solar Developer Recurrent Energy

Sharp Corp., the Japanese electronics maker, is seeking to sell its U.S. solar-energy development unit Recurrent Energy.

Sharp has retained Bank of Nova Scotia to help shop San Francisco-based Recurrent, according to documents obtained by Bloomberg. Profit in Osaka-based Sharp’s energy unit plunged 97 percent in its first fiscal quarter as residential solar sales slumped in Japan.

The sale would be Sharp’s latest step back from the solar industry. The company stopped making panels in the U.S. and U.K. this year and pulled out of an Italian panel-manufacturing joint venture.

“Sharp is considering various options for Recurrent including sale of the company, but nothing has been decided at this point,” Miyuki Nakayama, a spokeswoman for Sharp, said by phone today.

Recurrent declined to comment on Sharp’s strategy, the company said in an e-mailed statement.

Sharp bought Recurrent in 2010 for $305 million. Selling the unit would help the company raise capital.

Last year Recurrent raised more than $2.3 billion in equity and debt financing and brought 303-megawatts into operation, according to the statement.

Sharp fell 1.2 percent to 328 yen at the close in Tokyo today.

Recurrent has developed and sold more than 680 megawatts of projects in the U.S. and Canada, and has more than 4.3 gigawatts under development, according to the company. Google Inc. and KKR & Co. agreed in November to buy six Recurrent solar projects in California and Arizona in a $400 million transaction.

Sharp had sought bids from other Japanese trading and energy companies, Kyodo News reported without attribution on Aug. 1.

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