Bloom Energy posts loss as fuel cell orders surge

Bloom Energy photo of Newark plant.

Bloom Energy reported a loss in the first quarter while reporting a record number of order acceptances of fuel cells.

The San Jose, CA company, which operates a production site in Newark,  reported a record 235 system acceptances,  a 41.6 percent year-over-year increase.

Bloom reported $200.7 million of revenue, a gross margin of 7.8 percent and a net loss of $84.4 million.

Excluding stock-based compensation, the company reported a  15.0 percent gross margin and $2.1 million of adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization.

“We are pleased to have delivered a record Q1 for acceptances.  Our strategy to diversify our customer base is delivering results.  We secured new customers in tech, utility and life sciences sectors.  A 50-kilowatt demonstration of electricity generation on-site from landfill biomethane was a key accomplishment. Deployment of the  80th Bloom-powered microgrid this quarter underscores an increasing need for power that is reliable and resilient, as well as clean and affordable,” stated  KR Sridhar, founder, chairman and CEO, Bloom Energy.


Growth has been aided by a movement toward microgrids.  

Microgrids are miniature versions of the centralized electric grid that can switch between grid-connected and off the grid functions.  Commercial, government, utility and industry customers are interested in the approach.

According to Navigant Research, almost 500 new microgrid projects moved off the drawing board and into planning and deployment phases worldwide in the past six months, with more projects in North America than anywhere else.

Our pipeline suggests we will continue to benefit from this trend, because estimates indicate that the total annual cost of power interruptions to the U.S. economy is around $200 billion. With outages increasing in duration, it seems likely that cost will soar in the future.

Bloom reported that it continues to get repeat orders from existing customers.

One example of the trend came when long-time customer the San Jose Sharks, replaced earlier Bloom systems that have powered their home and practice facility for the past six years with the latest generation Energy Servers.

Bloom has reported continued improvements in the efficiency of the fuel cells.

An upgrade is in the works for Bloom’s largest array of fuel cells that connect with the Delmarva Power system and the grid  in northern Delaware.