LG to Quit Global Solar Panel Biz on Rising Costs

After exiting the mobile business last year amid stiff Chinese competition, South Korean multinational conglomerate LG Electronics has decided to leave the global solar panel manufacturing business on receiving its Board’s approval.

February 23, 2022. By Manu Tayal

After exiting the mobile business last year amid stiff Chinese competition, South Korean multinational conglomerate LG Electronics has decided to leave the global solar panel manufacturing business on receiving its Board’s approval.

The reason behind the company’s exit from the solar business was the increasing costs of material and logistics, as well as severe supply constraints.  

Post exiting the solar business, the company is planning to focus on growth sectors including energy storage systems and home energy management.

On the company’s decision, Thomas Yoon, President and CEO of LG Electronics North America, explained further that “although panel production will wind down this spring, LG will continue to support its US solar customers for years to come. LG stands behind its brand and will honor the limited warranty with each product sold. In addition, US consumers, installers and contractors will benefit from LG’s increased focus in other energy-related business areas.”

“While exiting the solar panel business, LG is concentrating on products and services that can have an even greater impact,” Yoon said. “Sustainability is a core business principle at LG Electronics, and we are constantly evaluating the ways in which LG can unlock potential, create greater value and support our vision for a better life for all.”

Notably, the company’s move will impact about 160 employees and about 60 contract workers at its corporate campus in Huntsville, Alabama, where the company has been assembling solar panels since 2018. Panel production there is expected to continue into the second quarter.

“We hope we can retain many of our talented and dedicated employees,” said Yoon.

Meanwhile, the company said that it is meeting its staff to identify potential opportunities within other LG business and manufacturing units.

However, those employees who will not be continuing with the company would be offered transition support and severance packages commensurate with their tenure with the company.

Although, the solar panel decision does not affect the company’s other extensive operations in Huntsville, where it has been located for 40 years.

Currently, Huntsville is home to LG’s US customer service headquarters with over 500 local positions working for or supporting its operations.
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