Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd. (NYSE: STP) (“Suntech” or the “Company”) today announced that it has obtained court orders to freeze the worldwide assets of GSF Capital and Mr. Javier Romero and to have an independent, court-appointed manager (the “Manager”) oversee their assets. In addition, the Manager has exercised the powers granted by the court to replace Mr. Romero as the manager of the general partner of the Global Solar Fund, S.C.A., Sicar (the “Fund”), thereby allowing the court-appointed Manager to take control of the Fund.
Dr. Zhengrong Shi, Suntech’s chairman and CEO said, “Our first priority is to protect the interests of our shareholders, and we are pleased that our litigation initiatives have been successful to date. The court-appointed Manager has already removed Mr. Romero from any management role in the Fund and is in the process of gaining control of the Fund’s operating assets. The rest of the Fund’s current management team is still in place and we look forward to continuing our working relationship with them in the future.”
“Our initial due diligence indicates that the solar plants owned and operated by the Fund’s operating companies are in good order,” Dr. Shi continued. “Over the coming weeks we intend to work closely with the Manager to review all of the assets and confirm that the operations are in line with our initial expectations.”
Based on Suntech’s initial due diligence, the Fund’s operating companies currently own and operate approximately 142MW of completed solar plants in Italy, of which 141MW are connected to the grid and generating revenues through the sale of electricity at wholesale rates. In addition, approximately 74MW of the total connected plants are currently receiving energy payments under the Italian feed-in-tariff program, and the remainder are expected to be accepted into the feed-in-tariff program within the coming months. Suntech noted that the above findings are not conclusive and the Company is continuing to investigate this matter.