Shares of solar energy stock FTC Solar (FTCI 4.25%) fell as much as 21.1% in trading on Wednesday after reporting third-quarter 2021 financial results. Shares recovered slightly late in the day and closed down 12.4%.
Revenue fell 11.2% to $53.0 million, and net loss was up nearly 10 times to $22.9 million, or $0.24 per share. Analysts were expecting $59.0 million in revenue and a loss of $0.19 per share.
On the positive side, FTC Solar is winning contracts. Management says contracted and awarded order growth is up 580% so far this year with another $267 million added since August.
Higher input costs for shipping and materials like steel are certainly headwinds for FTC Solar. But it's good news that the company has added $752 million in future orders so far this year. So there should be growth ahead.
What's concerning for a company like this is that it can't make money in a strong solar environment. Until we see a clear trend toward profitability, investors should tread wisely into solar tracking. This is ultimately a commodity business, and companies will have to win with scale and low costs, which FTC Solar hasn't proven it has yet.