Vestas coming to Northern Colorado

It now looks likely that Vestas, the world’s largest wind turbine manufacturer will build a blade manufacturing plant in Nortern Colorado, near Windsor.  I’d guess that some of the factors that made Danish Vestas consider locating here are:

  1. The proximity to NREL’s Wind Technology Center for turbine testing.
  2. Amendment 37, which will require large investments in wind farms in Colorado.
  3. The State’s central location, making it easy to ship blades anywhere in North America.
  4. Political support for wind, especially from newly elected Bill Ritter and the Democratically controlled state legislature.
  5. Colorado’s excellent wind resource.

The 500 high-paying jobs will be ones wind advocates can point to when talking about the benefits of renewable resources over fossil fuels.

UPDATE:

It’s official. According to this follow-up article in the Rocky Mountian News, transport was indeed crucial to winning the bid. In particular, they wanted a site with rail service.

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11 Comments

  1. Great news for Colorado. We had hoped to snag Vestas’s first North American manufacturing plant here in Oregon back around 2002-ish. Unfortunately, the PTC expired and Vestas chose to delay their plans for a manufacturing facility, although they ultimately opened up their North American headquarters in Portland.

    This is an excellent example of the right public policy support for renewables, including a renewable energy standard and proper tax incentives, netting a big new manufacturing facility and the accompanying good-paying jobs for the state.

    We can now add Vestas to a growing list of turbine manufacturers opening new North American facilities, including Gamesa (in PA), Suzlon (in MN), and Siemens and Clipper (in IA). Most it seems are building blade manufacturing plants, not turbine plants (with the exception being US-based Clipper). I guess for these overseas manufacturers, its much harder to ship the massive blades overseas than it is to transport turbines. Makes sense to start with blade facilities to serve the North American market. Perhaps turbine manufacturing facilities are to come later.

    Cheers,

    Jesse Jenkins

  2. mike pole said

    how can I invest in vestas

  3. tomkonrad said

    Note: none of the following should be taken as a recommedation to buy or not buy Vestas.

    But if you decide to, here’s how: Vestas trades on the Copenhagen stock exchange. To buy it, you will probably have to call your broker’s world trading desk and say you whant to buy it (this usually cannot be done online.) They will give you a quote, ask how many shares you want. I suggest using a limit order/good till cancelled to get the price you want, because the copenhagen exchange will not be open when you are calling your broker.

    There will be a hefty commission, so it’s not worth investing unless you have a good chunk of change to invest, and are planning to hold the company for well over a year.

  4. [...] Filed under Events, Colorado At the Colorado New Energy Summit yesterday, we got an update on Vestas new factory which they will be building in Windsor, Colorado (North of [...]

  5. Shankar said

    Please send Wind Turbine Blade Testing Capabilities.

    Shankar Sarpate
    +91-9998819014

  6. Tom said

    Not sure what you’re asking for Shankar, but I am sure I’m not the right person to ask. I evaluate companies, not wind turbines.

  7. eamon said

    Tom,
    When you say “a good chunk of change to invest”, what is the minimum you are thinking of. I have never bought a foreign stock and am wondering what kind of commissions and fees are applied to something like this on the Copenhagen Stock exchange.

  8. Tom said

    It depends on the broker you are using. If you deal with a broker who actually has a seat on the exchange in question, your commissions won’t be so high. It also depends on how long you want to be in the stock… if you’re in longer, you can handle a high up-front cost.

    As a rule of thumb, I like to keep my transaction costs below 0.5% per year (so if the transaction cost is 2%, I’ll want to hold the position for 8 years at least…. since you’ll probably also have to pay a comission to sell.) Ask your broker’s world trading desk how big the mark-up and commission you will expect to pay for the trade you are considering.) Many investors are willing to pay more than I am, but I feel frugality is the best policy: You can’t control the market, but you can control how much you pay to participate.

  9. Luke said

    How can one go about applying for a job there?

  10. Tom said

    Luke, 
    While I have not spoken to any Vestas person, I would apply through Vestas’s job/career page.

    You can also contact Vestas’s US office at the address below.

    Vestas USA
    1881 SW Naito Parkway, Suite 100
    Portland, OR 97201
    USA
    Tel.: +1 503 327 2000
    Fax: +1 503 327 2001
    vestas-americas@vestas.com

  11. Pete Hurd said

    Tom – why not buy the Vestas ADRs which trade OTC in the US? Is this more expensive than buying the underlying direct? Thanks.

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