SunPower to Shutter Residential Solar Direct-Sales Units, Axe 1,000 Jobs in the US

The troubled firm is restructuring its business to cut costs


U.S.-based solar firm SunPower Corp will wind down its SunPower Residential Installation (SPRI) locations, close SunPower Direct sales, and reduce its workforce by about 1,000 employees to rein in costs, according to an internal memo.

“I’m writing to share difficult news with you as we implement changes across our organization in the days and weeks to come,” wrote executive chairman of the board Tim Werner in the memo. “Some of our impacted team members will depart today, and others will remain on with us for a period of time to help facilitate the transition for our customers.”

Werner, who had previously served as CEO for nearly two decades, attributed the restructuring to prolonged market recovery and improving financial controls.

“To position SunPower for the future, we need to achieve financial viability, which includes simplifying our business structure and transitioning away from areas where we have been unable to sustain profitable operations,” he said.

The company has been dealing with some issues recently. On April 17, SunPower discovered errors in its audited financial statements for the fiscal year ending January 1, 2023, resulting in misstatements primarily related to certain deferred costs and sales commissions.

These adjustments are estimated to decrease income before taxes and equity earnings for that year by $15 to $25 million. The review, however, is ongoing, and the financial impact may change.

In February, the company announced that its CEO, Peter Faricy, had left the company, effective February 26, 2024. The board said it was conducting a search to identify a new permanent CEO.

Amidst the shift in leadership, Werner was called out of retirement to assume the role of executive chairman.

The company’s fourth-quarter revenue had fallen nearly 28% as it struggled to attract new customers amidst a high-interest rate environment.

SunPower in 2023 provided the most expensive equipment package on the marketplace, according to a report by EnergySage – an online marketplace for solar.