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Georgia gearbox plant born from Vestas deal

US: Vestas has signed a contract to buy gearboxes from German supplier ZF, which is to build the parts at a factory under construction in the US state of Georgia.

ZF's Gainesville, Georgia facility is due to begin production in early 2012, with a goal of eventually making 2,000 gear boxes a year.

The company is investing about $90 million in the factory, which will employ around 200 people.

The gearbox maker said it is establishing service centres in North America as well as the UK, Spain and Italy. It also plans to enter the Chinese and Indian markets.

ZF, a manufacturer of auto parts including transmissions and steering systems, is hoping for worldwide wind industry sales of €50 million by 2014.

Danish manufacturer Vestas installed its first US machines in 1985, and contributed 1.4GW – or 15% - of the 9.5GW installed in the country last year.

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