GE Seals €1.5bn LM Wind Power Turbine Blade Deal

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Engineering conglomerate GE has completed its €1.5bn purchase of Danish wind turbine technology purchase LM Wind Power, bolstering its position in the fast-expanding global wind energy market.

GE announced last week that it has sealed the deal, which was first announced last autumn, having secured regulatory approval in the EU, US, China, and Brazil.

The company said the deal would provide its renewable energy division with new turbine blade design and manufacturing capabilities. It added that the move would be accretive to GE earnings in 2018.

“The completion of the LM Wind Power acquisition provides us with the operational efficiencies necessary to support the growth of our wind turbine business, which is the fastest growing segment of power generation,” said Jérôme Pécresse, president and CEO of GE Renewable Energy, in a statement.”With LM’s technology and blade engineering, we are now able to improve the overall performance of our wind turbines, lowering the cost of electricity and increasing the value for our customers.”

Marc de Jong, CEO of LM Wind Power, said the deal built on a “long-standing partnership” between the two companies, including the installation of the first-ever offshore wind farm in the US. “We see many digital and advanced manufacturing technology capabilities that will help accelerate our technology development and increase our customer reach,” he added.

GE said LM Wind Power would continue to operate as an individual operating unit, providing blades to GE’s onshore and offshore wind turbine projects and to the wider wind industry. The company added that it has “established protocols and safeguards to protect customers’ confidential data”.

In other wind industry news, up to 200 jobs are set to be created at a Kishorn dry dock in the Highlands to support the development of floating offshore wind turbines off the Aberdeenshire coast.

The dry dock has been closed for 23 years, but is now due to re-open after Kishorn Port Ltd and Kincardine Offshore signed an exclusivity agreement to redevelop the site. Work is expected to begin at the site this summer with the first turbine in a 50MW project expected to be installed from the second quarter of 2018.

The move was welcomed by Scottish Business, Innovation and Skills Minister Paul Wheelhouse, who said it underlined the Scottish government’s commitment to delivering renewable energy supply chain jobs.

“With 25 per cent of Europe’s offshore wind potential, and through development with due regard to our natural environment, Scotland is strongly positioned to maximise the economic and environmental benefits that both technologies can deliver,” he said. “The Scottish Government is determined to ensure projects deliver supply chain jobs in communities across Scotland and we have been encouraging developers to do all they can to maximise their economic impact, so today’s agreement is very welcome.”