Vestas lands its largest order in years

It was a busy weekend for the wind turbine manufacturer, with orders from the French company EDF to instal turbines in two large wind projects in the United States. An analyst said it represents a turning point for the Danish company.

Vestas lands its largest order in years
Vestas will instal 150 wind turbines in New Mexico and 75 in Kansas. Photo: Vestas
Danish wind turbine manufacturer Vestas landed two massive orders over the weekend that will see the company instal 225 new turbines in the US. 
The company announced on Saturday that it had secured two orders from the renewables unit of Electricite de France (EDF) totaling 450 megawatts (MW). 
EDF ordered 150 Vestas V110 turbines for the Roosevelt Wind Project in New Mexico as well as 75 V100 turbines for the Slate Creek Wind Project in Kansas.
The 450 MW combined order represents Vestas’s largest since 2010 and comes as part of a master supply agreement with EDF Renewable Energy (EDF RE) that was announced in September. 
“Slate Creek will be our first V110-2.0 MW project with EDF RE, and Roosevelt will be the largest wind park in New Mexico,” Chris Brown, the head of Vestas’ sales and service division in the US and Canada, said.  
In response to the news, Vestas stock was up by over five percent on the Copenhagen C20 exchange on Monday morning. 
Niels Lunde, the editor-in-chief of financial daily Børsen, characterised the orders as a major turning point for Vestas, which has struggled in recent years.
“Vestas now has new leadership, a new strategy and the opportunity to create growth,” Lunde told DR. 
Vestas replaced former CEO Ditlev Engel with current leader Anders Runevad in September following eight consecutive quarters of losses. 
In other Vestas news, the company reached a $5 million (27 million kroner) conditional settlement on Thursday over a 2011 lawsuit filed by US shareholders who accused the company of misstatements that inflated the company's share price. 
As part of the settlement, Vestas denied any wrongdoing.
“We look forward to putting this case behind us, which will allow us to continue our focus on the operation of the business to the benefit of our customers and our owners,” the company’s chairman of the board, Bert Nordberg, said in a statement. 

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Danish wind turbine giant Vestas looking offshore after strong results

Vestas, the global leader in wind turbines, posted stronger annual results Wednesday and said it was looking to expand crucial offshore operations with a giant new model.

Danish wind turbine giant Vestas looking offshore after strong results
Photo: Henning Bagger/Ritzau Scanpix

The Danish company reported a 10 percent rise in net profit to 771 million euros ($933 million) for 2020, even though its supply chain had been affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Sales jumped 22 percent to a record 14.82 billion euros, a statement said.

One disappointing number was for orders however, which declined by eight percent to 12.7 billion euros in a sector where competition is stiff and global investment is growing.

Vestas has long been a leader in onshore turbines and must now catch up with offshore rivals such as the German/Spanish group Siemens Gamesa or the US multinational General Electric (GE).

“To lead the expansion of wind energy into becoming the dominant energy source, it is crucial for Vestas to become a leader in offshore wind,” the statement quoted president and chief executive Henrik Andersen as saying.

In October, Vestas spent 700 million euros to gain full control of the sea-based unit it launched in 2014 with the Japanese group Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.

This year, Andersen said the Danish company's focus “will be to fully integrate offshore (operations) and address executional challenges”.

Vestas unveiled a 15-megawatt offshore turbine design that it expects to begin installing in 2024.

For 2021, Vestas is targeting sales of 16-17 billion euros, which would represent a gain of eight to 15 percent.

In midday trading on the Copenhagen stock exchange, Vestas shares showed a drop of 3.9 percent to 1,227.50 kroner, while the OMX Nordic 40 index on which it is listed was 0.2-percent lower overall.