Tuesday, November 5, 2013

First Solar Facility in Mesa Sold to Apple Affiliate for $113m+

VIZZDA—November 5th, 2013 — First Solar ($FSLR) has sold its Mesa manufacturing facility to an entity reportedly formed by Apple ($AAPL) for $113,576,875 or $84.66 per ft2. The property is located at 3740 S. Signal Butte Road on the southwest corner of Signal Butte & Elliot Roads in Mesa. The facility is part of DMB Associates, Inc.’s 3,154-acre Eastmark masterplan community. First Solar acquired the property as 133 acres of land July 15th, 2011 from DMB for $2 PSF, as their first phase manufacturing facility. 
Future site of Apple's Sapphire Glass Manufacturing Facility
An additional 129-acre second-phase parcel was leased from DMB with plans for a similar facility. In 2012 the subject building was constructed- featuring 1,341,492 SF of improvements per assessor calculation on an 83.17-acre site. First Solar had intended to use the facility to manufacture cadmium telluride photo-voltaic modules, but the site was never commissioned for manufacture and was instead used for operations, maintenance, & inventory. Financial filings indicate First Solar realized an $56.6M asset impairment for the Mesa facility in its third quarter filing with the SEC.  

On October 3rd 2013, First Solar entered a purchase agreement to sell its Mesa assets and later split the 133 acre first phase parcel into a 50-acre land portion and 83 acre factory site. VIZZDA reported on October 8th, 2013 that Coolidge, Arizona-based Bright International acquired the 50 acre land parcel at $1.60 PSF. The buyer for the 1.3m+ SF building is Platypus Development LLC- which although no direct entity linkage is made to Apple Corporate—all correspondence relating to the sale is in care of Phoenix, AZ-based law firm, Greenburg Traurig—an announcement made by Arizona’s Governor confirms the purchase.

Hadden Schifman
Managing Director

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