Bonn-based Solarworld for years has been the only big German solar panel producer fighting to defy slumping prices in an oversupplied market. But its struggle for survival finally came to an end on Wednesday, when Chief Executive Frank Asbeck had to admit defeat to his 3,000 employees.
The company, founded in 1998, said it no longer saw a positive prospect for its business and decided to file for insolvency. “This is a bitter step for Solarworld. We will do everything in our power to preserve as many jobs and production sites as possible,” Mr. Asbeck wrote in a letter to his employees.
Solarworld, as many other Western solar panel producers, has suffered from overcapacity in China and elsewhere in Asia. Rapid price drops caused most of Solarworld’s German competitors to close shop years ago, but Mr. Asbeck had hoped to save his company.