In a statement, Sharp said the planned closure will take place by the end of February and will result in up to 250 redundancies. It said the decision was part of "structural reforms" and maintaining capacity of Wrexham's solar production was "unsustainable."
It is with sincere regret that we have decided to end solar panel production in Wrexham. Our employees are our greatest asset, and we have been fortunate to have a loyal, hardworking and committed workforce since we began solar production here in 2004.
The Wrexham facility will continue to produce microwave ovens, and we will be investigating additional products for development.
– Hiroshi Sasaoka, Sharp CEO for Europe
Sharp will continue its solar sales business in Europe, expanding our customer base, as we move towards a true energy solutions business that draws on our expertise in related areas, including energy storage and management systems.Market conditions in Europe have become increasingly severe over the past 18 months. A 30% drop in the unit price of European solar panels since the beginning of 2012 has left Wrexham's output uncompetitive here in the UK, and in Europe.