American solar company files for bankruptcy

The solar company, which holds the development rights for the world's largest solar power project, has filed for bankruptcy protection after its majority owner began insolvency proceedings in Germany.

Reuters reports that Solar Trust of America LLC has held rights for the 1000 MW Blythe Solar Power Project in the Southern California desert, which last April won $2.1bn of conditional loan guarantees from the U.S. Department of Energy. It is unclear how the bankruptcy will affect that project.

Solar Trust said it ran short of liquidity after Solar Millennium AG (S2MG.DE), which holds a 70 per cent stake, sought court protection in December.

Solar Millennium then tried to sell that stake to solarhybrid AG (SHLG.DE), but that transaction collapsed when solarhybrid also sought court protection in Germany.

Edward Kleinschmidt, Solar Trust of America's chief operating officer, in a court filing said the company has already missed two quarterly rent payments on the Blythe project, and cannot make several other payments due imminently.

Solar Trust of America and several affiliates filed for protection from creditors with the U.S. bankruptcy court in Delaware. It estimated to have as much as $10 million of assets, and between $50 million and $100 million of liabilities.

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