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May 11, 2011

GOV. BARBOUR CELEBRATES TWIN CREEKS TECHNOLOGIES' START OF PRODUCTION IN SENATOBIA

Renewable energy facility adds highly-skilled jobs with revolutionary technology

Gov. Haley Barbour celebrated today the opening of Twin Creeks Technologies Inc., a Silicon Valley-based manufacturer of crystalline silicon solar panels, committed to changing the economics of solar-generated electricity.

In April 2010, Gov. Barbour and Twin Creeks' Chief Executive Officer Dr. Siva Sivaram announced the company would be constructing its first 100-megawatt manufacturing facility in Senatobia.  The new plant will create 500 jobs, in two phases, over a five-year period and represents a corporate investment of $175 million.  The opening of the factory marks the successful entry of the high-growth renewable energy business into northern Mississippi.

"I am delighted to celebrate the start of production at Twin Creeks' new high-tech manufacturing facility in Senatobia," Gov. Barbour said.  "This innovative company is a prime example of the types of businesses we are recruiting - advanced manufacturing with high-quality, high-paying jobs for Mississippi workers in growing sectors such as energy.  I congratulate Twin Creeks on this milestone and thank them for their commitment to doing business in Mississippi."

"The vital support of the local community throughout the speedy completion of phase one of construction has reinforced our decision to select Senatobia, Mississippi, for our first production facility," said Twin Creeks Technologies Vice President of Operations Reza Nikfar. "By working together with the local community, we are now producing American-made solar panels only twelve months after breaking ground.  We look forward to continuing this relationship as we begin production and throughout the next phase of construction."

With the opening of the Senatobia facility, Twin Creeks completes the first step in meeting its commitment to northern Mississippi. Since breaking ground less than one year ago, 150 local workers have been employed in construction of the factory. In addition, approximately 70 percent of the resources used to complete phase one of construction were locally sourced. Construction of the new facility will continue over the next four-to-five years, resulting in a 250,000-square-foot manufacturing site upon completion. 

Staffing the expanding operation with a highly-skilled workforce will require talent from local academic institutions such as Northwest Mississippi Community College, the University of Mississippi and Mississippi State University. Twin Creeks has established four scholarships for math, engineering and materials science students at these schools in an effort to support a locally hired workforce.

"Twin Creeks greatly values its partnerships with the State of Mississippi and the community of Senatobia in allowing the construction of Mississippi's first renewable solar technology production plant," said Dr. Sivaram. "Today marks a great achievement as we continue building a brighter future together. We have an unbreakable commitment to change the face of photovoltaic technology and to efficiently deliver renewable energy without irreparable damage to the environment."

"Last year, the Mississippi Development Authority was pleased to work with Twin Creeks officials in announcing the company had selected Senatobia, Mississippi, as the site of its first full-scale production facility.  Today, we are excited that this innovative company is opening its doors and beginning production of its low-cost, high-efficiency solar panels, while creating high-quality jobs for Mississippi residents," said Whit Hughes, deputy director of the Mississippi Development Authority. "We look forward to continuing to work with the company in the months and years ahead as it ramps up to full production, and we wish Twin Creeks many years of success here in Mississippi."

Twin Creeks Technologies was founded in 2008.  Headquartered in San Jose, Calif., the venture-backed solar technology company has a portfolio of more than 60 patent applications and operates engineering and manufacturing locations in San Jose, Danvers, Mass., Senatobia, Miss., and Ipoh, Malaysia. Twin Creeks' revolutionary technology will enable low-cost, distributed generation of clean, renewable solar electricity.  For more information please visit: www.twincreekstechnologies.com.