Vestas Wind Systems A/S, the biggest wind-turbine maker, agreed to provide towers for power projects in North America that use other companies’ systems.
Vestas will begin producing the towers soon at its plant in Pueblo, Colorado, and the deal will create more than 100 jobs by the end of this quarter, the Aarhus, Denmark-based company said today in a statement. It said it will supply a number of non-Vestas projects, without naming the customers.
The deal is a second lifeline this year to Vestas factory workers in the U.S. after the House of Representatives on Jan. 1 passed a bill extending subsidies to wind projects. It’s also the first time Vestas has sold towers in North America to projects not using its turbines, part of a new strategy to become more flexible at a time when shipments are declining.
“Vestas is continuously evaluating its manufacturing footprint and opportunities to utilise the current production capacity better,” Chief Operating Officer Jean-Marc Lechene said in the statement. “Producing components for third parties is part of this strategy, and although we have had other smaller orders, this new agreement is the first major step.”
Vestas sees global shipments totaling 5 gigawatts in 2013, from about 6.3 gigawatts last year. Today’s supply agreement may use up 25 percent of capacity at the Pueblo plant, Vestas said.