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Vestas Wind Systems A/S
Publicly traded Aktieselskab
Traded as OMX: VWS
Industry Electrical equipment
Founded 1945
Founder Peder Hansen
Headquarters Aarhus, Denmark, European Union
Key people
Anders Runevad (Group President and CEO), Bert Nordberg (Chairman)
Products Wind turbines
Revenue €6.910 billion (2014)[1]
€607 million (2014)[1]
Profit €392 million (2014)[1]
Total assets €6.997 billion (end 2014)[1]
Total equity €2.379 billion (end 2014)[1]
Number of employees
17,905 (2014 average)[1]
Vestas V47-660kW wind turbine at the American Wind Power Center in Lubbock, Texas

Vestas Wind Systems A/S is a Danish manufacturer, seller, installer, and servicer of wind turbines. It is the largest in the world,[2][3][4] but due to very rapid growth of its competitors its market share decreased significantly from 28% in 2007. In 2012 it even lost its top position,[5] but regained it in 2013 with 13.1% market share.[6] The company operates manufacturing plants in Denmark, Germany, India, Italy, Romania, the United Kingdom, Spain, Sweden, Norway, Australia, China, and the United States,[7] and employs more than 17,000 people globally.[1]


  • History 1
  • Operations 2
  • Products 3
  • Business strategy 4
  • Research and development 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


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,[8] and produced wind turbines exclusively from 1989.[9]

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 a sales slump and an operational loss in 2005,[7] Vestas recovered in 2006 with a 28% market share[7] and has continued to increase production although market share has slid to between 12.5[3] and 14%[4] as other manufacturers have also increased production.

Vestas recovered and was voted Top Green Company of 2006.[10] 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.[11] As of 2011, Vestas wind turbines generated enough electricity to provide for 21 million people. In January 2011, Vestas won the $1.5m (£940,000) Zayed Future Energy Prize in Abu Dhabi.[12]


Vestas has installed over 48,000 wind turbines for a capacity of 55 GW in over 70 countries on five continents.[13] As of 31 2012 the company has built production facilities in more than 12 countries, among them China, Spain and the United States.[14] In China, Vestas employs 2,600 people.[15]

The company's North American headquarters was relocated in 2002 from Palm Springs, California to Portland, Oregon.[16][17] 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.[18] 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.[18] The company moved its Portland offices to the new headquarters building, a renovated historic building, in May 2012.[19]

Vestas employs a further 750 persons at a blade manufacturing facility in Windsor, Colorado. Vestas has nacelle and blade manufacturing facilities in Brighton, Colorado[20] and also operates a tower facility in Pueblo, Colorado.[21] 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.[21] 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 suggested firing 1,600 out of its 3,000 U.S. workers if the U.S. did not renew the 2.2 cents-per-kilowatt-hour Production Tax Credit,[22] which were extended in 2013.[23]

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.[24]

In 2013, the tower factory in Pueblo began ramping up to full utilization as orders rebounded from the 2012 slump.[25]

In September 2013, Vestas made a joint venture for offshore wind turbines with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.[26][27][28][29] Their V164-8MW offshore turbine produced a record 192 MWh in 24 hours due to favorable winds.[30]

In May 2014, Vestas announced it would be adding hundreds of jobs to its Windsor and Brighton facilities and following a rough 2012 it called 2013 one of Vestas’s "best years ever".[31] Vestas also added employes in Pueblo and expected the tower facility to eventually top 500.[25] Vestas stated that it expected to have 2800 employees in Colorado by the end of 2014.[32]

In March 2015, Vestas announced it would be upping jobs by 400 at its blade manufacturing facility in Windsor and stated "We had a very successful 2014".[33]


Vestas V112-3.0 MW in Bavaria, Germany

Some of the more recent wind turbine models made by Vestas are listed below.[1][34] The rotor diameter (in meters) follows the V.

  • V47-660 kW (phased out)
  • V52-850 kW (phased out)
  • V60-850 kW [35] (phased out)
  • V66-1.75 MW (phased out)
  • V80-1.8 MW (phased out)
  • V80-2.0 MW
  • V82-1.65 MW (phased out)
  • V90-1.8 MW
  • V90-2.0 MW
  • V90-3.0 MW (phased out)
  • V100-1.8 MW IEC S
  • V100-2.0 MW IEC 2B
  • V100-2.6 MW (phased out)
  • V105-3.3 MW
  • V110-2.0 MW IEC 3A
  • V112-3.0 MW IEC 2A (phased out)
  • V112-3.3 MW IEC 2A
  • V112-3.3 MW IEC 1B
  • V117-3.3 MW IEC 2A
  • V126-3.3 MW[36]
  • V164-8.0MW (2014)[37]

Business strategy

The Vestas protest on the Isle of Wight in 2009.
Vestas offices in Madrid, Spain.

In July 2009, Vestas announced its manufacturing operations on the Isle of Wight in England would close due to a lack of UK demand, affecting 525 jobs there and 100 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.[38]

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".[39] 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 3,000 jobs.[40]

In November 2010, Vestas shut down the 70-person staff advisory department 'Vestas Excellence', responsible for securing competitiveness, handling suppliers, Quality Assurance and globalization.[41][42]

Vestas claims a strategy of focusing on customers and quality rather than turbine price and market share.[3]

In January 2011, Vestas won the $1.5m (£940,000) Zayed Future Energy Prize in Abu Dhabi. As of 2011, Vestas wind turbines generate enough electricity to provide for 21 million people.[12]

In May 2013, Marika Fredriksson became the company's new Executive Vice President and 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.[43]

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.[44]

According to a Life-cycle assessment by Vestas, a wind turbine makes back the manufacturing energy in about 7 months, and carbon dioxide emission during production and maintenance is about 7 grams per kWh.[45]

In October 2009, Vestas and QinetiQ claimed a successful test of a stealth wind turbine blade mitigating radar reflection problems for aviation.[46][47][48][49]

In December 2010 Vestas were developing the V164 7 MW offshore turbine,[9] with a 164 m rotor diameter. Prototypes of it will be manufactured at Lindø due to size, crane and port access requirements. Series production of nacelles for the 32 turbines (256 MW) extension of the 90 MW Burbo Bank Offshore Wind Farm will occur at Lindø, while blades are made at Vestas' Isle of Wight facilities[50][51][52] in England.[53] DONG Energy will test a prototype in the sea off Frederikshavn in 2013, at a cost of DKK 240 million.[54][55]

In June 2011, the Vestas

  • Vestas
  • Yearly accumulated orders, 2010-2014

External links

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "Annual Report 2014" (PDF). Vestas. Retrieved 20 August 2015. 
  2. ^ Badstue Pedersen, Maria Berg. "BTM: Vestas stadig nummer et" Energy Supply, 30 March 2015.
  3. ^ a b c Reddall, Braden. Vestas will not chase market share at any price Reuters/BTM Consult, 1 September 2010. Retrieved 30 December 2010.
  4. ^ a b Acher, John. Vestas kept No. 1 spot in wind market -consultant Reuters/MAKE, 17 March 2010. Retrieved 30 December 2010.
  5. ^ Greentech Media: A Record Year for World Wind Power in 2012
  6. ^ Bloomberg: Vestas Regains Wind Turbine Market Share Lead in Navigant Study
  7. ^ a b c Goska Romanowicz (21 March 2007). "Profits soar for top wind turbine maker". Faversham House Group Ltd. Retrieved 2009-01-22. 
  8. ^ "From 1971-1986: Energy experiments and the brink of disaster". Vestas. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  9. ^ a b Beattie, David (22 December 2010). "Key Players in the Wind Energy: Pausing for Thought". Renewable Energy World. 
  10. ^ Portfolio 21: Vestas Wind Systems Top Green Company of 2006. (29 January 2007).
  11. ^ Invest in Denmark
  12. ^ a b Vidal, John (19 January 2011). "Vestas gives away energy prize winnings to runners-up". The Guardian. 
  13. ^ Vestas' track record 31 December 2012
  14. ^ Wind as a modern energy source: the Vestas view. (PDF).
  15. ^ "More job losses at Vestas as it closes China factory and restructures Asia businesses" Elsevier/ Reinforced plastics, 27 June 2012. Retrieved 23 July 2012.
  16. ^ Read, Richard (8 September 2009). "Vestas looking at existing buildings for headquarters".  
  17. ^ Read, Richard; Manning, Jeff (18 August 2010). "Oregon, Portland help wind turbine maker Vestas build $66 million HQ".  
  18. ^ a b Siemers, Erik (18 August 2010). "Vestas keeps HQ in Portland, moving to the Pearl".  
  19. ^ Williams, Christina (23 May 2012). "Gallery: Inside Vestas' new digs". Sustainable Business Oregon. Retrieved 8 August 2012. 
  20. ^ Jaffe, Mark (21 February 2013). "Vestas cuts 110 Colorado jobs at Brighton, Windsor blade factories". Retrieved 2 April 2015. 
  21. ^ a b "Colorado Cluster: State Gets Another Vestas Facility". Wind Energy Weekly. 14 May 2010. 
  22. ^ Sulugiuc, Gelu (25 January 2012). "Vestas Jobs Threat Pressures Obama to Extend Tax Break". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved 22 August 2012. 
  23. ^ Gerhardt, Tina (6 January 2013). "Wind Energy Gets a Boost Off Fiscal Cliff Deal".  
  24. ^ Severance, Ryan (14 August 2012). "Vestas employees told one by one of layoffs". Pueblo Chieftain. Retrieved 22 August 2012. 
  25. ^ a b Darrow, Dennis (11 March 2014). "Vestas to hire 80 more for Pueblo tower factory". Retrieved 2 April 2015. 
  26. ^ "Vestas and MHI Establish Strong Offshore Wind Partnership", 30 September 2013. Accessed: 30 September 2013.
  27. ^ Mitsubishi Heavy Joins With Vestas in Offshore Wind Projects
  28. ^ Ben Backwell. "Full speed ahead for Vestas/MHI" ReCharge News, 27 September 2013. Accessed: 30 September 2013.
  29. ^ "Analyst: Mitsubishi increases Vestas' chance of success" (in Danish) Børsen, 30 September 2013. Accessed: 30 September 2013.
  30. ^ "MHI Vestas 8 MW Turbine Breaks World Record", 17 October 2014.
  31. ^ Udell, Erin (20 May 2014). "Vestas to add hundreds of jobs in Windsor and Brighton". Retrieved 2 April 2015. 
  32. ^ Garcia, Adrian (19 July 2014). "Vestas to fill 800 jobs in Colorado by the end of 2014". Retrieved 2 April 2015. 
  33. ^ "Vestas upping jobs by 400 in Windsor". 13 March 2015. Retrieved 2 April 2015. 
  34. ^ We face the challenge Vestas films
  35. ^ "V60-850 kW" (PDF). Retrieved 2009-08-17. 
  36. ^ "Vestas launches new variant of 3 MW turbine". Retrieved 18 December 2012. 
  37. ^ "Gamechanging Vestas V164 Wind Turbine Continues Groundbreaking Development (8MW Wind Turbine!)". Retrieved 18 December 2012. 
  38. ^ Matthew Weaver and Steven Morris (21 July 2009). "Staff occupy Isle of Wight wind turbine plant in protest against closure". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 July 2009. 
  39. ^ "Vestas expands wind turbine manufacturing in China and US as British demand collapses". Guardian. 18 August 2009. 
  40. ^ Reuters. Reuters.
  41. ^ Stage, Mie. Vestas fires 70 experts (in Danish), 17 November 2010. Retrieved 18 November 2010.
  42. ^ [2] (in Danish, paid access) Børsen, November 2010. Retrieved 18 November 2010.
  43. ^
  44. ^ Rosen, Ellen. Intellectual Property Bloomberg, 11 October 2010. Retrieved 11 October 2010.
  45. ^ "Life cycle assessment of electricity produced from onshore sited wind power plants based on Vestas V82-1.65 MW turbines" page 4. Vestas, 29 December 2006. Accessed: 27 November 2014.
  46. ^ QinetiQ and Vestas test 'stealth technology' for wind turbines Renewable Energy Focus, 26 October 2009. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
  47. ^ 'Stealth' wind turbine blade may end radar problem Reuters. Cnet, 27 January 2010. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
  48. ^ Fairly, Peter. Stealth-Mode Wind Turbines Technology Review, 2 November 2009. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
  49. ^ Appleton, Steve. Stealth blades – a progress report QinetiQ. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
  50. ^ Bredsdorff, Magnus. "Nu indleder Vestas serieproduktion af verdens største havmølle" Ingeniøren, 22 December 2014. Retrieved: 24 December 2014.
  51. ^ Børsen
  52. ^ DONG PR
  53. ^ Dyrskjøt, Mette. Vestas builds turbines at Lindø Børsen, 24 November 2011. Retrieved 10 December 2011.
  54. ^ Nymark, Jens. Seaturbines competitive in 15 years Børsen, 15 November 2011. Retrieved 10 December 2011.
  55. ^ Vestas/DONG tests 7 MW turbine fushi, 27 October 2011. Retrieved 10 December 2011.
  56. ^ List of Top 500 systems, 1–100 June 2011, TOP500. Retrieved 19 June 2012.
  57. ^ Kildebogaard, Jesper. "Danmarks hurtigste supercomputer leverer vejrudsigt til Ekstra Bladet" Ingeniøren / Version2, 24 April 2012. Retrieved 20 September 2012.
  58. ^ Jesper Kildebogaard. "Vestas' supercomputer finder den bedste bakketop til vindmøllen på 5 minutter" Ingeniøren / Version2, 1 November 2013. Accessed: 2 November 2013.
  59. ^ Kildebogaard, Jesper. "Vestas forærer aflagt supercomputer til Aalborg Universitet" Ingeniøren / Version2, 20 September 2012. Retrieved 20 September 2012.
  60. ^ Semi-submersible wind turbine is floating into the future "ReCharge" 4 July 2012
  61. ^ Dvorak, Paul (2 November 2012). "Sad sign of the times: Vestas closing R&D facilities". Wind Power Engineering. Retrieved 12 September 2013. 
  62. ^ "Vestas Begins Operating Wind Industry’s Largest Test Bench" CleanTechnica, 20 August 2013. Accessed: 30 September 2013.
  63. ^ Scientific Advisory Board meeting introduction. 5 September 2013, meeting date.
  64. ^ Munk, Jane. "Dansk vrag løftet ombord på kæmpeskib" TV 2 (Denmark), 23 December 2014. Retrieved: 24 December 2014


See also

Vestas has sponsored the Vestas Sailrocket sailboat[64] and is sponsoring a team for the 2014–2015 Volvo Ocean Race, round-the-world sailing race.

On 5 September 2013, Dr. Chris Spruce, Vestas Senior Product Engineer, served as member of the Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) for the kite-energy-systems project ERC HIGHWIND, a project at KU Leuven dedicated to the research and development of tethered airfoils dedicated to generating energy by airborne wind energy (AWE). [63]

In August 2013, Vestas started operating its 20 MW test bench for nacelles in Aarhus.[62]

In 2012, Vestas scaled back and closed some of its R&D offices in Houston, Marlborough, Louisville, China, Singapore and Denmark.[61]

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).[60] 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.

WindFloat, operating at rated capacity (2MW), approximately 5km offshore of Agucadoura, Portugal


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