Robert Bosch GmbH has taken over the Thuringian solar cell manufacturer Ersol Solar Energy AG, Germany. In August the world’s largest automotive supplier and electronics company bought up 44.76 % of the shares from the previous majority shareholder Ventizz Capital Partners Advisory AG. Since announcing the takeover in June Bosch has bought up a further 29.34 %. Together with shares offered through a public takeover bid by Bosch and a possible purchase of further Ventizz-held shares in March 2009, the company would hold over 90 % of the shares. Last year Ersol generated a worldwide turnover of € 160 million. This year the company forecasts a turnover of over € 300 million.
By taking over Ersol, Bosch wishes to strengthen its business in renewable energies, to which transmission and drive technologies for wind turbines and solar heating systems already belong. The company also wishes to considerably expand collector manufacture at the Wettringen site in northern Germany. By the end of the year a new production hall should be up and running which will more than double the annual manufacturing capacity from 150,000 collector panels previously to 200,000 units. This company site concentrates on selectively coated full-surface absorbers. In Aveiro, Portugal, Bosch opened a flat-plate collector factory in 2007 which manufactures black chrome fin collectors. The capacity of the Portuguese plant is 150,000 collector panels per year. Both factories are currently pretty busy, confirms company spokesperson Ingo Rapold.
This text was written by Joachim Berner, a German journalist and solar thermal expert. Further information: