Fuel cell company Bloom Energy reported losses of $209 million for 2023, with debt reaching $3.9 billion.

But the solid-oxide fuel-cell and electrolyzer maker said that data centers would help it grow and pay down its debts. In 2023, revenues hit a record $1.3bn, and it managed to eke out a profit of $12.9m in the final quarter.

Bloom Energy
– Bloom Energy

"For the last few months, my team and I have been engaged deeply with several leading companies in the AI space, from CEOs all the way to working level technical teams," KR Sridhar, Bloom's founder and CEO, said.

"The sales funnel for this sector alone is massive, not in the megawatts but in the gigawatts. The funnel is composed of several A-list companies with credible growth projections who are told by their utility companies to not rely on them for additional power."

Utilities are telling data center operators that "they cannot provide them power," Sridhar said. "So, most data centers that are talking to us today are asking us to be the standalone solution... the gas pipeline and the medium pressure pipelines is very available and we don't have to do anything specific other than have our customer tap into those lines and work with the gas companies to get that."

This offers a step change for the company, he said. While the company has worked with data center operators before - including Equinix, JPMorgan Chase, Nxtra, and AWS - those contracts were mostly upgrades to existing facilities.

"Most of the opportunities we are pursuing today are for greenfield data centers," Sridhar said.

He added that he had recently had four meetings with large data center players "and, collectively, these four opportunities that I met would add up in terms of a pipeline interest to more than 0.5 gigawatts."

Across all of its business units, the company has sold around five gigawatts' worth of power globally.

Despite its upbeat tone around data center sales, the company's share price fell some 17 percent following its earnings call.

In a note to the SEC, it warned: “Given our substantial level of indebtedness, it may be difficult for us to secure additional debt financing at an attractive cost, which may in turn impact our ability to expand or maintain our operations, develop our products, and remain competitive in the market."

At the same time, CFO Greg Cameron announced that he plans to depart. A successor has not been announced.