|Type||Publicly traded Aktieselskab|
|Traded as||OMX: VWS|
|Headquarters||Aarhus, Denmark, European Union|
|Key people||Anders Runevad (Group President and CEO), Bert Nordberg (Chairman)|
|Revenue||€6.920 billion (2010)|
|Operating income||€310 million (2010)|
|Profit||€156 million (2010)|
|Total assets||€7.066 billion (end 2010)|
|Total equity||€2.754 billion (end 2010)|
|Employees||17,778 (December 2012)|
|This article is outdated. (July 2014)|
Vestas Wind Systems A/S is a Danish manufacturer, seller, installer, and servicer of wind turbines. It is the largest in the world, but due to very rapid growth of its competitors its market share decreased from 28% in 2007 to 12.5% in 2009.[needs update] The company operates manufacturing plants in Denmark, Germany, India, Italy, Romania, the United Kingdom, Spain, Sweden, Norway, Australia, China, and the United States, and employs more than 17,000 people globally.
After a sales slump in 2005, Vestas recovered and was voted Top Green Company of 2006. In late 2008 the company announced a manufacturing expansion in Colorado. In August 2010, Vestas also announced a significant expansion of its North American headquarters in Portland, Oregon. In October 2010, the company announced it was closing some of its factories in Scandinavia, with the loss of 3000 jobs.
Vestas was founded in 1945 by Peder Hansen as "Vestjysk Stålteknik A/S" (West-Jutlandish steel technology). The company initially manufactured household appliances, moving its focus to agricultural equipment in 1950, intercoolers in 1956, and hydraulic cranes in 1968. It entered the wind turbine industry in 1979, and produced wind turbines exclusively from 1989.
In 2003, the company merged with the Danish wind turbine manufacturer NEG Micon to create the largest wind turbine manufacturer in the world, under the banner of Vestas Wind Systems. After an operational loss in 2005, Vestas recovered in 2006 with a 28% market share and has continued to increase production although market share has slid to between 12.5 and 14% (depending on source) as other manufacturers have also increased production.
In February 2009, the company announced the production of two new turbine types, the 3-megawatt V112 and 1.8-megawatt V100. The new models were to be available in 2010.
Vestas has installed over 48,000 wind turbines for a capacity of 55 GW in over 70 countries on five continents. As of 31 December 2012 the company employed 17,778 people globally, and has built production facilities in more than 12 countries, among them China, Spain and the United States. In China, Vestas employs 2,600 people.
The company's North American headquarters was relocated in 2002 from Palm Springs, California to Portland, Oregon. On 1 December 2008 Vestas announced plans to expand its North American headquarters in Portland through construction of a 600,000-square-foot (56,000 m2) new building, but this plan was mothballed in 2009 due to the economic recession, and in August 2010 the company announced a revised plan, scaled back in size, to expand its Portland headquarters by renovating an existing-but-vacant 172,000 sq ft (16,000 m2) building. At that time, Vestas employed about 400 in Portland and committed to add at least 100 more employees there within five years; the new building will have space for up to 600 workers. The company moved its Portland offices to the new headquarters building, a renovated historic building, in May 2012.
Vestas employs a further 750 persons at a blade manufacturing facility in Windsor, Colorado, and plans to add 1400 jobs at a new blade and nacelle assembly facility that is under construction near Brighton, Colorado, and up to 125 engineers at a 47,675 sq ft (4,429.2 m2) product development site in Louisville, Colorado. Vestas also operates a tower facility in Pueblo, Colorado. Vestas said it decided to build its North American production facilities in Colorado because of the state’s central location, extensive transportation infrastructure and rail system, existing manufacturing base, and skilled workforce. Vestas wind turbine blades are made from high strength, light weight carbon fiber supplied by Zoltek Companies Inc. in St. Louis, MO.
In January 2012, the company threatened to fire 1,600 out of 3,000 U.S. workers if the U.S. does not renew the 2.2 cents-per-kilowatt-hour Production Tax Credit, scheduled to expire at the end of 2012.
On 13 August 2012, an estimated 90 workers were laid off from the Pueblo facility. Six long colored lines, leading to an exit, had been placed on the floor. Those laid off were given one of six different colored papers, and then instructed to follow the colored line that matched the colored paper they had been given.
Some of the more recent wind turbine models made by Vestas are listed below. The rotor diameter (in meters) follows the V.
- V47-660 kW
- V52-850 kW
- V60-850 kW (China)
- V66-1.75 MW
- V80-1.8 MW
- V80-2.0 MW
- V82-1.65 MW
- V90-1.8 MW
- V90-2.0 MW
- V90-3.0 MW
- V100-1.8 MW IEC S
- V100-2.0 MW IEC 2B
- V100-2.6 MW
- V110-2.0 MW IEC 3A
- V112-3.0 MW IEC 2A
- V112-3.3 MW IEC 2A
- V112-3.3 MW IEC 1B
- V117-3.3 MW IEC 2A
- V126-3.3MW (2013)
- V164-8.0MW (2014)
In July 2009, it was announced that Vestas' operations on the Isle of Wight in England would close due to lack of demand, affecting 525 jobs there and 100 jobs in Southampton. Approximately 25 workers at the wind turbine factory on the island occupied the administration offices in protest on 20 July 2009, demanding nationalisation to save their jobs.
In August 2009 Vestas hired more than 5,000 extra workers for its new factories in China, the United States, and Spain. The company said it was "expanding heavily in China and the US because these markets were growing the fastest, in contrast to the sluggish pace of wind farm development in the UK".
As part of this gradual shift in production away from Europe and towards China and the US, in October 2010, the company announced it was closing 5 factories in Denmark and Sweden, with the loss of 3000 jobs.
In November 2010, Vestas shut down the 70-person staff advisory department 'Vestas Excellence', responsible for securing competitiveness, handling suppliers, Quality Assurance and globalization.
Vestas claims a strategy of focusing on customers and quality rather than turbine price and market share.
In May 2013, Marika Fredriksson will become the company's new Chief Financial Officer after her predecessor Dag Andresen resigned for personal reasons. Her strategy is to lead Vestas back to higher earnings after the important losses faced by the company: from €166 million losses in 2011 and increasing to €963 million in 2012.
Research and development
Vestas spent €92 million ($128 million), or 1.4% of revenue, on research and development in 2009. It has filed 787 wind turbine patents (227 in 2010) according to United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office (UK-IPO), while General Electric has 666 and Siemens Wind Power has 242.
In December 2010 Vestas were developing of a 7 MW offshore turbine, with a 164 m rotor diameter. Prototypes of it will be manufactured at Lindø due to size, crane and port access requirements, but series production will occur in England. DONG Energy will test a prototype in the sea off Frederikshavn in 2013, at a cost of DKK 240 million.
In June 2011, the Vestas supercomputer Firestorm was number 53 on the TOP500-list of the world's most powerful computers calculating worldwide weather in a 3x3 km grid, and it delivers daily weather reports to the newspaper Ekstra Bladet and similar purposes. In 2012, Vestas donated the older 1344-core supercomputer from 2008 to Aalborg University.
In October 2011, Vestas participated in the deployment of a floating wind turbine offshore of Portugal. Vestas supplied a v80 2.0 MW offshore turbine to Windplus, S.A. (a joint-venture company including Energias de Portugal, Repsol, Principle Power, A. Silva Matos, Inovcapital and Portugal Ventures). The system, known as the WindFloat, consists of a semi-submerssible type floating foundation, a conventional catenary mooring, and the wind turbine. The successful deployment represents the first offshore multi-megawatt wind turbine to be installed without the use of any heavy-lift or specialized offshore construction equipment.
In 2012, Vestas scaled back and closed some of its R&D offices in Houston, Marlborough, Louisville, China, Singapore and Denmark.
In August 2013, Vestas started operating its 20 MW test bench for nacelles in Aarhus.
- List of wind turbine manufacturers
- Renewable energy companies on the stock exchange
- Renewable energy industry
- Wind power
- Wind power in Denmark
- "Annual Report 2010". Vestas. Retrieved 9 February 2011.
- Vestas' Annual Report 2012
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- Invest in Denmark
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- We face the challenge Vestas films
- "V60-850 kW" (PDF). Retrieved 2009-08-17.
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- 'Stealth' wind turbine blade may end radar problem Reuters. Cnet, 27 January 2010. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
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- List of Top 500 systems, 1–100 June 2011, TOP500. Retrieved 19 June 2012.
- Kildebogaard, Jesper. "Danmarks hurtigste supercomputer leverer vejrudsigt til Ekstra Bladet" Ingeniøren / Version2, 24 April 2012. Retrieved 20 September 2012.
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- Semi-submersible wind turbine is floating into the future "ReCharge" 4 July 2012
- Dvorak, Paul (2 November 2012). "Sad sign of the times: Vestas closing R&D facilities". Wind Power Engineering. Retrieved 12 September 2013.
- "Vestas Begins Operating Wind Industry’s Largest Test Bench" CleanTechnica, 20 August 2013. Accessed: 30 September 2013.
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