US residential solar installer Vivint Solar has continued its slow-but-steady upward trend, posting strong revenue and beating analyst expectations in the second quarter of 2017.
I have been somewhat obsessively covering Vivint Solar for a year now, ever since the company got mixed up in the eventual-bankruptcy of once-renewable energy megalith, SunEdison — signing, then eventually terminating a merger agreement with the company. Vivint Solar was in dire straits a year ago, but ever since it terminated the merger agreement with SunEdison — a mere month before the latter filed for bankruptcy — it has managed to regain its footing, and have this year begun turning a profit, albeit a slight one.
The company has spent the last year slowly but steadily doing one of two things — signing financing agreements which allow it to go about providing customers with residential solar installations, or expanding its operations into more and more US states. A year ago, the company only operated in 9 states, and that number is now up to 20 states.
Vivint Solar on Tuesday published its second quarter 2017 financial results, and the company reported strong growth again, continuing its upward trend. The company booked a total of 55 MW (megawatt) worth of solar installations during the quarter, and installed approximately 47 MW over 7,108 installations, bringing the company’s total cumulative installations up to 774 MW over 113,287 installations. Cost per watt for installations decreased again, down from $2.98 in the first quarter of 2017 and $2.94 a year ago, down to a healthy $2.88.
Financial operations for the quarter were strong as well, with total revenue for the quarter amounting to $73 million — up 109% from the $34.9 million taken in during the second quarter of 2016, and up 37% on the first quarter of 2017. Revenue from operating leases and incentives was $43.4 million, up 45% from $30.0 million in the second quarter of the prior year, and up 42% on the first quarter of this year. Total income was only $5 million, and $0.04 per share, and while these are down on historical figures, investors remained happy with the company’s performance.
Looking forward, Vivint Solar expects to see between 46 MW to 52 MW worth of new solar installed during the third quarter, at a cost per watt of between $2.80 and $2.90.
“Let me begin my prepared remarks by saying how pleased I am that the company continues to make strong progress toward the key objectives we’ve laid out over the last year,” said David Bywater, Vivint Solar CEO, in the company’s earnings conference call. “We continue to be laser-focused on making Vivint Solar the most sustainable and well-run residential solar company in the market.
We continue to make and execute on decisions that we believe best position our company for long-term success with an emphasis on buildings profitable solar systems that delight our customers and return value to our shareholders.”