14 December 2011

First Solar restructures; appoints Jim Brown president of Global Business Development

First Solar Inc of Tempe, AZ, USA, which manufactures thin-film photovoltaic modules based on cadmium telluride (CdTe) as well as providing engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services, is to consolidate its worldwide sales and project development activities under Jim Brown, who has been appointed to the new role of president, Global Business Development.

The reorganization combines First Solar's Utility Systems Business Group and Components Business Group under a unified global structure encompassing sales, project development, product management and the customer service and technical services groups. As a result, TK Kallenbach, president of the Components Business Group (CBG), will leave First Solar effective 1 January 2012.

First Solar has also reorganized the structure and roles in its finance and accounting groups. As a result, James Zhu, chief accounting officer (CAO), will leave the firm on 1 May 2012. Mark Widmar, chief financial officer (CFO), will add the role of CAO to his responsibilities effective 1 February 2012.

"We thank TK and James for their dedication and for their commitment to helping us build sustainable global markets for solar electricity," said Mike Ahearn, chairman and interim CEO of First Solar. "These changes support our broader effort to reposition First Solar to lead the industry through the current market turbulence, and to better serve our customers around the world with comprehensive solar energy solutions."

"First Solar is uniquely positioned in the PV (photovoltaic) industry to have a deep and meaningful impact on the future of electricity generation, and it has been rewarding to be a part of that success," said Kallenbach.

Brown joined First Solar in 2008 as vice president, Project Finance, and was appointed president of the Utility Systems business in August this year. Prior to First Solar, he worked in banking for approximately 20 years covering project and structured finance for the energy and industrial sectors.
Widmar joined First Solar as CFO in April 2011 from Graftech International Ltd, where he was CFO. Prior to Graftech, he held senior positions in finance and controlling at NCR, Dell, and Lucent Technologies. Widmar is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

Tags: First Solar Thin-film photovoltaic CdTe

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