Alstom exempts wind from global job cuts

FRANCE: Alstom has said its wind will be unaffected by the 4,000 layoffs it is planning across its global power business through to 2012.

Alstom Wind vice-president Alfonso Faubel
Alstom Wind vice-president Alfonso Faubel

The statement underlines Alstom's bid to place its wind turbine division, Alstom Wind, among the global leaders. As a result, its coal and gas operations, mainly in the US and Europe, will take the brunt of the job cuts.

In an interview to appear in the upcoming November issue of Windpower Monthly Alstom Wind Vice President, Alfonso Faubel said the company's 6MW, direct drive offshore machine, currently under development, is central to its ambitions.

He added Alstom's big balance sheets and knowhow in large wind farms and turbines will place it among the "limited number of players capable of addressing the technical challenges and the liability side" of offshore wind, he added.

The global economic crisis has dampened Alstom Wind's global assault after acquiring Spanish wind turbine manufacturer Ecotècnia in 2007. But now it is set to increase its operations, claims Faubel.

Similarly, Alstom Wind has recently clinched a number of landmark contracts, including one for Spanish utility Iberdrola's 217MW extension to its Whitelee development in Scotland. It has also recently landed contracts for 100MW, 95MW and 24MW in the emerging markets of Morocco, Brazil and Turkey.

The company is building two turbine factories: Bahia, in the emerging market of Brazil, with a 300 MW annual capacity and Amarillo, Texas, at 800 MW/year.

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