REC, the largest European supplier of solar panels worldwide, has been acquired by the Norway-based Elkem Group.

The ambition of REC and Elkem, a world-leading producer of silicon among other businesses, is to establish a leading integrated PV player in a highly fragmented solar market. The management of both entities now look forward to starting the integration process.

Steve O’Neil, REC’s new CEO, who joined the company on March 25, 2015, states, “I am proud to join REC at such an exciting time. The combination of the two companies will provide a strong platform to further develop REC as a leading global provider of solar energy solutions. With predicted solar generation costs as low as 2-4 eurocents per kilowatt hour by 2050, solar is expected to be the world’s most common energy source. By this transaction, we will further boost our pole position in utilising this incredible potential.”

Elkem looks forward to contribute to the development of the existing organisation of REC and to invest in its further growth as a leading global brand in the solar industry. Both companies are strongly committed to maintaining the high-quality of REC’s solar panels, optimising the solar value chain and combining their sales strengths, such as Elkem’s strong position in the construction and building segment through its essential microsilica additive.

Thanks to extensive R&D efforts, Elkem Solar is offering high-quality solar grade silicon compared to material from FBR or Siemens process, while at the same time consuming 75% less energy than conventional production methods. By increasing the share of Elkem Solar Silicon® in REC’s manufacturing of solar panels, REC will continue to reduce its leading energy payback time and CO2 footprint as well as further decrease solar panel cash costs in line with the expected global solar technology progress.

“We are pleased to welcome REC into the Elkem Group and look forward to start integrating the value chain between Elkem Solar and REC. By doing this, we are establishing a leading integrated player in the solar market. The two companies have developed a strong business relationship, there is a good strategic match and we share a Norwegian corporate culture and heritage,” says Helge Aasen, CEO of Elkem.