Areva closes solar power business after financial loss

Shares in Areva closed 20 percent lower on Friday as the French nuclear power group posted a first-half loss and announced it was dropping its solar business.

Cost overruns, delays, and the 2011 nuclear accident and the Fukushima Daiichi plant in Japan all helped stagnate Areva’s sales of its European Pressurized Reactor (EPR) technology since 2007, according to Reuters. Areva said in the article that it hoped France’s EDF would get permission from the European Union competition authorities to build two Areva reactors in Britain.

Areva said it would close its concentrated solar power business and would write down $500.6 million on the business and listed an operating loss of $409.3 million. About 100 solar energy jobs will be cut in the U.S. and India.

The company also said in Reuters that it would cut 1,500 jobs in Germany by the end of 2015 and 200 U.S. jobs this year. Revenue decreased 12.4 percent to $5.2 billion and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization decreased to $303.3 million from $653.6 million.

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