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Fluence raises guidance again, reveals AESC and Northvolt battery deals

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Global battery storage system integrator Fluence raised its full-year guidance again after a strong third quarter, while revealing battery cell orders with AESC and Northvolt.

The company’s financial year runs to 30 September making April-June its third quarter, and it released its quarterly results yesterday (9 August). It saw revenues of US$536.4 million in the period, up 124% year-on-year.

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It saw a GAPP gross profit margin of 4.1% versus negative 2.2% in the same quarter last year. Fluence told Energy-Storage.news last year that under new CEO Julian Nebreda the company was “making a primary focus on profitable growth”, and it has been improving margins and reducing losses each quarter since.

Its net loss of US$35 million and adjusted EBITDA loss of US$26.2 million were around half of the prior year’s figures; US$60.8 million and US$52.7 million respectively.

The company increased its full-year guidance to US$2-2.1 billion of revenue having done the same in both its Q2 and Q1 results.

Perhaps in a sign of focusing less on getting as many projects as possible, the firm’s backlog edged up relatively slowly, at 3.5%, from US$2.8 billion at the end of Q2 to US$2.9 billion and the end of Q3 (30 June).

Fluence also revealed that it has secured an agreement to purchase US-made battery cells from AESC, which it said will make it one of the first companies to provide a storage product that qualifies for the Inflation Reduction Act’s domestic content 10% adder to the investment tax credit (ITC).

However, Energy-Storage.news notes that energy storage products may not need US-made cells to qualify based on the adder’s criteria.

The company also received a 400MWh contract that will utilise nickel-manganese-cobalt (NMC) batteries manufactured by European gigafactory company Northvolt, Fluence’s first major project to use European manufactured batteries. Fluence and Northvolt have previously announced plans to collaborate on energy storage system (ESS) manufacturing.

The company was founded by utility AES and electrics and engineering conglomerate Siemens, and remains majority-owned by the pair. It has continued to reduce the amount of revenue it gets from “related parties”, which was 51% in Q3 2022 but for Q3 2023 has fallen dramatically to 19%.

“We delivered a strong quarter of timely project execution,” said Julian Nebreda, the Company’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “Additionally, I am pleased with the job our team has done to strengthen our supply chains through our agreement to purchase US manufactured battery cells from AESC. We believe this agreement will enable both our shareholders and our customers to capture the benefits of the Inflation Reduction Act. Moreover, we successfully increased our pipeline by over $1 billion on a quarter-to-quarter basis, and we bolstered our Total Cash position by more than $30 million.”

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