SOURCE: Hoku Scientific, Inc.

March 05, 2008 08:00 ET

Hoku and Solar-Fabrik Subsidiary Amend Polysilicon Supply Agreement

POCATELLO, ID--(Marketwire - March 5, 2008) - Hoku Materials, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Hoku Scientific, Inc. (NASDAQ: HOKU), established to manufacture and sell polysilicon for the solar market, today announced an amendment to its polysilicon supply agreement with Global Expertise Wafer Division, a wholly owned subsidiary of Solar-Fabrik AG (XETRA: SFXG), a vertically integrated solar power company in Freiburg, Germany, to extend the date for Hoku to complete the financing for its planned polysilicon plant. Under the terms of the amendment, Hoku or Global Expertise Wafer Division may terminate the supply agreement if Hoku has not secured financing for its polysilicon plant by May 31, 2008, which is a two-month extension from the previous deadline of March 31, 2008. This is the only amendment to the supply agreement, and the extended deadline is consistent with the financing deadlines in Hoku's contracts with SANYO Electric Co., Ltd., and Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd.

"We recently completed our $25 million private placement, and we continue to work with Merrill Lynch on their due diligence to lend us the additional capital we need to finance the construction of our polysilicon facility in Pocatello, Idaho," said Dustin Shindo, Chief Executive Officer of Hoku Scientific. "Extending the financing deadlines in our customer contracts reduces some of the time pressure to complete the financing. We appreciate the continuing support from Global Expertise Wafer Division of our planned polysilicon business."

In December, 2007, Hoku Scientific announced that it had signed a non-binding term sheet with Merrill Lynch Pierce Fenner & Smith Inc. for Hoku Materials to borrow up to approximately $185 million for the construction, procurement and start-up of its planned polysilicon production plant in Pocatello, Idaho. The term sheet expires on May 31, 2008. In February, Hoku Scientific completed the private placement of approximately $25 million of its common stock to institutional investors and a subsidiary of Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd.

About Hoku Scientific, Inc.

Hoku Scientific (NASDAQ: HOKU) is a diversified clean energy technologies company with three business units: Hoku Materials, Hoku Solar and Hoku Fuel Cells. Hoku Materials plans to manufacture, market, and sell polysilicon for the solar market from its plant currently under construction in Pocatello, Idaho. Hoku Solar markets, sells and installs turnkey photovoltaic systems in Hawaii. Hoku Fuel Cells has developed proprietary fuel cell membranes and membrane electrode assemblies for stationary and automotive proton exchange membrane fuel cells. For more information visit www.hokuscientific.com.

About Solar-Fabrik AG

Global Expertise Wafer Division is a silicon wafer procurement house based in Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) and is wholly owned by Solar-Fabrik AG. Global Expertise Wafer Division buys recyclable wafers from the semiconductor industry, opening up a new source of raw material previously unavailable to the solar power sector. Solar-Fabrik has grown in only a decade from a solar panel maker to an internationally focused, stock market-listed, fully integrated solar power group. Solar-Fabrik and its subsidiaries and associates span the entire solar power value chain: wafer procurement, wafer recovery, solar cell manufacture, solar module production and system solutions. Solar-Fabrik AG is headquartered in Freiburg, Germany, where the company's two factories turn solar cells into top-quality solar modules. Solar-Fabrik customers include solar energy specialists and general importers throughout Europe. Module production is ISO-certified and runs entirely on renewable energy, in what is Europe's first CO2-neutral zero emissions manufacturing facility for solar modules. Solar-Fabrik also provides customers with system solutions based on carefully matched high-quality components. Based in Chennai (India), Poseidon Solar-Services specializes in recovering recyclable wafers. Solar-Fabrik uses wafers recovered by Poseidon to manufacture high-quality solar cells. Singapore-based solar cell manufacturer SEP turns raw wafers recovered by Poseidon into high-quality solar cells. Solar-Fabrik AG holds a one-third stake in SEP. For more information about Solar-Fabrik Group, please visit www.solar-fabrik.de.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve many risks and uncertainties. These statements relate to Hoku Materials' ability to successfully raise sufficient funds by May 31, 2008, if at all, to establish polysilicon manufacturing facilities, including the final decision of Merrill Lynch Pierce Fenner & Smith Inc. to provide the loan to Hoku Materials, and the final amount of the loan to Hoku Materials, if at all; the terms and conditions that may be included in the loan and collateral documents; Hoku Materials' ability to engineer and construct a production plant for polysilicon; its ability to manufacture polysilicon; its cost to procure a polysilicon production facility; Hoku Materials' ability to meet the delivery schedules in its customer contracts in general, and to begin shipping products in 2009, in particular; it's ability to successfully achieve the milestones in its contract with Global Expertise Wafer Division, Ltd.; the quality of polysilicon to be manufactured; Hoku Materials' costs to manufacture polysilicon, Hoku Scientific's future financial performance; Hoku Scientific's business strategy and plans; and objectives of management for future operations. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by terms such as "anticipate," "believe," "can," "continue," "could," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "plan," "potential," "predict," "project," "should," "will," "would" and similar expressions intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause Hoku Scientific's actual results, performance, time frames or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance, time frames or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Given these risks, uncertainties and other factors, you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. In evaluating these statements, you should specifically consider the risks described in Hoku Scientific's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Except as required by law, Hoku Scientific assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements publicly, or to update the reasons actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements, even if new information becomes available in the future.

Hoku, Hoku Solar, Hoku Fuel Cells, and the Hoku Scientific logo are trademarks of Hoku Scientific, Inc., and Hoku Materials is the trademark of Hoku Materials, Inc., all rights reserved.

Contact Information


  • CONTACTS For Hoku Scientific:
    Tel: 808-682-7800
    Email Contact

    CONTACTS For Solar-Fabrik AG:
    Martin Schlenk
    Investor Relations Manager
    E-Mail: Email Contact
    Tel.: +49-761-4000-207
    Fax: +49-761-4000-199

    Andrea Ocker
    Public Relations Manager
    E-Mail: Email Contact
    Tel.: +49-761-4000-130
    Fax: +49-761-4000-199