Solar Frontier and Yano Industry Enter Solar Utility Business

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TOKYO, September 11, 2012 – Solar Frontier K.K. and Yano Industry Co., Ltd. have agreed to develop two megawatt-scale solar power plants in Kunitomi, Miyazaki Prefecture, Japan. Utilizing Solar Frontier’s high yield, fast payback[1] CIS thin-film modules, Solar Frontier will operate a 2.2 MW solar power plant (Kunitomi No.1 Megasolar) and Yano Industry will operate a 1.1 MW plant (Kunitomi No. 2 Megasolar). This marks the expansion of both Solar Frontier and Yano Industry into the solar utility business following the implementation of renewable energy feed-in tariffs in Japan in July. Solar Frontier Director and Senior Vice President Atsuhiko Hirano, Yano Industry President Toshiya Yano, and Mayor of Kunitomi Toshimi Kawano spoke of their great expectations for the projects at a press conference held in Kunitomi today.

Combined, these projects will total 3.3 MW and will be jointly developed on 7 hectares of land owned by Yano Industry in Oaza Kiwaki, Kunitomi Town. In addition to its high kWh-efficiency CIS modules, Solar Frontier will also provide project development consulting services for Kunitomi No. 2 Megasolar. Yano Industry will also provide its proprietary “Misago” gravel to prevent the growth of weeds and reduce maintenance burden.

Kunitomi No. 1 Megasolar, which will be operated by Solar Frontier, will be equipped with roughly 14,000 Solar Frontier solar panels on land rented from Yano Industry. Kunitomi No. 2 Megasolar will be operated by Yano Industry and will use around 7,000 Solar Frontier modules on land owned by Yano Industry. Solar Frontier will also provide project development consulting services[2] for system design and such for the No. 2 plant. Kunitomi No. 2 Megasolar will generate power equivalent to 16% of the annual electricity needed to run Yano Industry’s Tano and Hyuga factories, part of the company’s goal of generating renewable energy equivalent to a significant proportion of the power it consumes.

Solar Frontier will leverage the know how it has gained from installations around the world to design the installation and the two companies plan to begin selling power from the plants by the end of March, 2013, at the latest. When finished, the power plants will together be one of the biggest solar projects in Miyazaki.

Kunitomi in Miyazaki is the location of Solar Frontier’s 900MW Kunitomi production facility, one of the world’s largest PV module plants, and Miyazaki is home to Yano Industries where it bases its gravel production, meaning that this move by both companies to enter the solar utility business together in Miyazaki is highly symbolic. By moving ahead with this project, Solar Frontier and Yano Industry hope to contribute to the local economy and local generation and consumption.

About Solar Frontier

Solar Frontier K.K., a 100% subsidiary of Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K. (TYO:5002) (“Solar Frontier”), has a mission to create the most economical, ecological solar energy solutions on Earth. Building on a legacy of work in solar energy since the 1970s, Solar Frontier today develops and manufactures CIS (denoting the copper, indium, and selenium elements of the absorber layer) thin-film solar modules for customers in all sectors around the world. Solar Frontier’s gigawatt-scale production facilities in Miyazaki, Japan, integrate compelling economical and ecological advantages into every module: from lower energy requirements in manufacturing to the higher overall output (kWh) of CIS in real operating conditions. Solar Frontier is headquartered in Tokyo, with offices in Europe, the U.S.A., and the Middle East. Visit for more information.

About Yano Industry

Yano Industry Co., Ltd. manufactures and sells a wide range of stone materials including gravel for roads and concrete, crushed sand, rubble, riprap, road bed ballast, gravel. Headquartered in Miyazaki Prefecture, Japan, it is the largest quarry operator in the prefecture, and boasts a solid sales network that includes the largest construction and concrete companies in Japan. The company is comprised of six group companies including logistics enterprises Yano Transportation Co., Ltd and Yano Industry Co., Ltd. that make up a solid operational base.


Regina Kirchmann, Edelman Germany (Munich)

Tel: +49 89 413 01 823