SolarWorld ups and downs

SolarWorld has experienced both good news and bad news in recent weeks.

On Jan. 31, the company announced that it had been chosen as one of only four approved solar energy providers to participate in a group-purchasing program for state and local governments. Helping Governments Across the County Buy is a 35-year-old cooperative purchasing program of the Houston-Galveston Area Council. It is composed of 6,106 local and state government agencies in 47 states.

But just the week before, SolarWorld announced that lagging sales were forcing the company to restructure its financing and operational structure. As part of the changes, 50 positions will be eliminated in the company’s Hillsboro manufacturing plant, including temporary workers.

And SolarWorld is also trying to close a loophole in the U.S. Department of Commerce’s recent imposition of duties on Chinese companies that have been illegally dumping solar products in America. Although SolarWorld sought the duties, they were not applied to Chinese-made products that are assembled in other locations.

The company says the finished products are also illegally subsidized by the Chinese government.

Company looks past lawsuit

Officials with Entro Industries in Hillsboro say the company is ready to move forward following the dismissal of a lawsuit filed against it earlier this year.

The suit, filed by competitor Columbia Industries in February, accused the company and its principles of misappropriation of trade secrets, unjust enrichment, conversion and breach of fiduciary duty. As part of a settlement agreement, the Washington County Circuit Court dismissed the lawsuit in its entirety, including all claims and counterclaim asserted by the parties.

“We are pleased with the resolution of this legal issue and look forward to growing our business,” said Entro Industries President Shawn Smith. “The settlement allows Entro to put the claimant’s issues behind us and to move ahead. We are excited because we have no legal limitations on what we can do for current and future customers.”

Entro Industries is an engineering, design, fabrication and equipment moving firm.

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