SunPower to cut nearly 25% of workforce, including direct residential sales

By Kelly Pickerel | April 24, 2024
SunPower principal executive officer Tom Werner today released a letter to employees that announces layoffs and division closures.

To achieve financial viability, SunPower will move to a low fixed-cost model that should better react to market fluctuations. The company will wind down its SunPower Residential Installation (SPRI) locations and close SunPower Direct sales. SunPower will reduce its workforce by approximately 1,000 people in the next few weeks — likely close to 20-25% of SunPower’s staff. The company reported having 4,710 full-time employees as of Jan. 1, 2023, while Reuters is reporting the company had 3,800 employees recently. Those impacted by the job eliminations should have been contacted today.

“After a short transition period, all pipeline operations from pre-installation through system activation will be handled by Blue Raven Solar, full-service installation partners and our trusted network of SunPower-certified dealers — all who meet our standards of integrity, design, quality and customer service,” Werner stated. “As we make this transition over the next month, we are dedicated to handling our customer experience with the highest levels of care and with minimal impact on timelines.”

SunPower will focus its efforts now on its Dealer Network and installation partners. The company is also planning to continue its work with new home-build construction.

SunPower has been on a bumpy road since diversifying its business at the beginning of this decade. The company sold its large-scale O&M portfolio to NovaSource in May 2020, spun off its solar panel manufacturing arm to Maxeon in August 2020, acquired Blue Raven Solar in October 2021 to refocus its residential efforts, sold its commercial installation division to TotalEnergies in February 2022 and just lost its exclusive solar panel supply agreement with Maxeon last month.

The company revealed this week that it had identified misstatements in its results for fiscal year 2022 and expects a $15 million to $25 million decrease in income from continuing operations before income taxes and other adjustments for the year that ended Jan. 1, 2023. Among the reason for the misstatements include wrongly classified sales commissions as cost of revenue.