Vestas sells turbine tower factory to China’s Titan

Vestas is to sell its Varde wind turbine tower factory to Chinese tower manufacturer Titan Wind Energy, in an agreement that will save the facility from closure.

Signed on Tuesday, the agreement comes after the Danish company made the decision in January to close the factory in an effort to cut costs. Vestas did not disclose the value of the sale, but said it will allow most of the factory’s 120 employees to stay on.

The agreement is still pending approval by the Chinese authorities, which Vestas said it expects to happen shortly. Once approved, Vestas is scheduled to transfer the facility to Titan’s ownership in September.

“Based on Denmark’s leading position within the wind industry and excellent facilities for shipment of large turbine towers mainly intended for offshore, the facility in Varde is ideally positioned to support the further globalisation of Titan Wind Energy’s operations,” Vestas said in a statement.

Titan, which is one of Vestas’ suppliers, hopes to use the factory to establish a presence in Europe, which it sees as the “most promising” region for offshore wind.

Yan Junxu, chief executive of Titan Wind Energy, said: “Our new towers facility here in Denmark increases our possibilities of servicing and expanding our global customer base. The location of our European headquarters in Varde is optimal because we see Denmark as the focal point for the global wind industry. Europe is the region that offers the most promising outlook for the development of offshore wind energy.”

The sale comes just days before an official state visit of Chinese president Hu Jintao to Denmark. As part of the visit, the two companies are set to sign a Memorandum of Understanding on Friday, while Mr Junxu will visit the factory on Monday.

Ditlev Engel, Vestas’ chief executive, said: “This is an excellent agreement for all parties involved. Vestas welcomes the establishment of Titan Wind Energy in what might be described as the cradle of the global wind industry and we see a huge potential in the ongoing cooperation and co-development with Titan Wind Towers.”

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