Solar energy may be the wave of energy’s future, but companies like Google (GOOG) and Chevron (CVX) may best start-ups in getting to the benefits. A number of large American companies with tremendous balance sheets are pouring money into solar energy based on the fact that it is becoming more competitive with oil.
According to Bloomberg, "Costs for the technology will fall below coal as soon as 2020, the U.S. government estimates. JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo & Co. invested last year in the biggest solar plant built in a generation; Chevron and Google are funding research; and Goldman Sachs is seeking land to lease as demand out-paces wind turbines and geothermal."
Given the potential size of the bonanza, the investments should not be surprising, but they could squeeze smaller solar energy companies out of the market. Firms like JA Solar (JASO) and SunTech (STP) have their entire futures bet on the success of solar energy and the fact that there are not many companies in the business, at least until now.
It has began to occur to large companies that if fossil fuels will indeed start to run low in two or three decades that the trillions of dollars in market cap currently represented in large oil company stocks will have to go somewhere.
Why not to Google (GOOG) and Goldman Sachs (GS)?
Douglas A. McIntyre