Walton Estate Scores Big With Solar

by Talk Business & Politics ([email protected]) 124 views 

A sharp investment in solar energy netted a payday of around $350 million for the estate of Wal-Mart heir John T. Walton earlier this month.

A report from Dow Jones on Aug. 20 stated JCL Holdings LLC, an affiliate of the John T. Walton estate, reduced its stake in First Solar Inc. from 12.1 million to 10.7 million shares.

Dow Jones reported this was the first divestiture of stock by the Walton estate, which was one of the founding investors.

JCL Holdings, managed by the late Walton’s wife and sons, still owns 13 percent of the company. The John Walton estate controls an additional 23 percent.

The company, which makes thin-film panels with cadmium-telluride at a much cheaper cost than the traditional polysilicon manufacturers — got all that? — went public in November 2006 with an initial offering of $20 per share.

The company’s shares were trading for $280 on Aug. 21, leaving JCL Holdings with a stake worth nearly $3 billion.