Maxeon Solar Technologies Layoffs: 15% Staff Cuts at Solar Panel Maker
October 11, 2023 by Joe Panettieri
Maxeon Solar Technologies layoffs will impact roughly 15% of the solar company's global workforce, according to an SEC filing and a press release. Despite the targeted job cuts at Maxeon and some other sustainability-oriented companies, the overall green technology job market appears to remain strong.
Maxeon's products include global rooftop and solar power plants. The global renewable energy company, based in Singapore with offices in San Jose, California, has a network of more than 1,700 partners and distributors.
Maxeon Solar Layoffs: Business Weakness Triggers Staff Cuts
Meanwhile, Maxeon blamed recent business weakness on a large U.S. distributed generation customer that breached payment obligations to the solar company. As a result, Maxeon's third-quarter adjusted EBTIDA is expected to be roughly $30 million lower than previously estimated, the SEC filing revealed.
Amid that backdrop, Maxeon halted shipments to the delinquent customer in late July 2023. The customer recently made several payments and is "close to becoming current," but Maxeon has not resumed shipments to the customer, the SEC filing said.
Still, it sounds like Maxeon's business challenges extend beyond the delinquent U.S. customer. In a statement, Maxeon CEO Bill Mulligan said: “As a result of rapidly changing market and industry conditions, we have acted decisively to streamline our operations, invest in new technology, and adjust our mix between the DG and utility-scale markets. We believe that Maxeon is well positioned to weather this market disruption and come out stronger on the other side."
Maxeon expects to complete most of the layoffs by the end of 2023. The company will provide further details during its third quarter 2023 earnings call, which is scheduled for November 15, 2023.
The Maxeon layoffs surface less than one month after the company acquired Solaria's sales channel assets. That deal should "meaningfully accelerate" the buyer's direct sales efforts, Maxeon CEO Bill Mulligan said in September 2023. Moreover, Maxeon gained "immediate access to a qualified source of tariff-free solar panels" that the company plans to market adjacent to the buyer's flagship IBC solar panels. The acquisition also involved certain patents.
Growing Green Job Market Faces Targeted Layoffs, Staff Cuts
Meanwhile, the overall sustainability job market remains strong -- as businesses seek employees to fill green IT, renewable energy, and energy transition jobs.