Based on the aggregated intelligence of 170,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, solar equipment manufacturer GT Solar International (Nasdaq: SOLR) has earned a respected four-star ranking.

With that in mind, let's take a closer look at GT Solar's business and see what CAPS investors are saying about the stock right now.

GT Solar facts

Headquarters (founded)

Merrimack, N.H. (1994)

Market Cap

$1.6 billion


Semiconductor equipment

Trailing-12-Month Revenue

$732.7 million


CEO Thomas Gutierrez (since 2009)

CFO Richard Gaynor (since 2010)

Return on Equity (average, past 2 years)



$259.6 million / $0


Amtech Systems (Nasdaq: ASYS)

Applied Materials (Nasdaq: AMAT)

MEMC Electronic Materials (NYSE: WFR)

Sources: Capital IQ (a division of Standard & Poor's) and Motley Fool CAPS.

On CAPS, 92% of the 448 members who have rated GT Solar believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bulls include woodhaven1965 and Lumiere33.

Late last year, CAPS member woodhaven1965 tapped the stock as a bright selection:

Solar energy sector will grow and [GT Solar] is a cost-effective supplier of the raw building blocks of solar technologies. Like to bet on the suppliers in growing industries rather than the front line product creators (where competition can really kill quickly). If industry grows, there will be room for numerous quality suppliers.

GT Solar's debtless balance sheet and exciting growth prospects support its four-star CAPS status. Over the next five years, GT Solar is expected to grow its bottom line (50% per annum) at a faster pace than rivals Amtech (35%), Applied Materials (14%), and MEMC (18%), as well as solar panel plays such as First Solar (Nasdaq: FSLR) (24%) and Yingli Green Energy (NYSE: YGE) (29%).

CAPS member Lumiere33 lists more of the stock's positives:

[GT Solar] is currently entrenched in three rapidly growing markets: polysilicon production, polycrystalline PV, and now LED (sapphire crystal substrate technologies). It is a growing profitable company with great margins, no debt, and a worldwide customer base.

What do you think about GT Solar, or any other stock for that matter? If you want to retire rich, you need to put together the best portfolio you can. Owning exceptional stocks is a surefire way to secure your financial future, and on Motley Fool CAPS, thousands of investors are working every day to find them. CAPS is 100% free, so get started!

Fool contributor Brian Pacampara owns no position in any of the companies mentioned. First Solar is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers recommendation. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.  The Fool's disclosure policy always gets a perfect score.