Windpower Top 30 - the wind manufacturer chiefs

WORLDWIDE: It is that time of year again when Windpower Monthly selects and ranks the most influential people in the wind power industry.

In terms of wind power manufacturers this year's list features several individuals who are coming up for their first anniversary in wind. This is largely due to a number of departures in 2013, including 2012 winner and former Vestas CEO Ditlev Engel.

As with last year, Windpower Monthly is giving its readers a chance to vote for who they believe is the most powerful person in wind. You can do so via this link.

In the coming weeks, this article will be followed by several other articles featuring the top politicians, developers, financiers and other influencers in wind power. The final list will be published in Windpower Monthly's October edition.

In terms of the manufacturers, this year's list looks easier to compile. In 2013 a number of new people took up senior roles, such as Anders Runevad at Vestas and Anne McEntee at GE. While heading up companies with enormous sway, it was still too early to rate them as individuals and subsquently their ranking may have suffered slighly.

Here is the long list for the most influential players in the wind turbine manufacturing industry.

Rafael Mateo - CEO Acciona Energy
Mateo has headed up Acciona since 2013 after joining the company as a senior director in 2010. Although the company is outside the top 10 manufacturers, it is has a presence in several key markets including Brazil and, rare among manufacturers, is a developer of projects.

Hans-Dieter Kettwig - CEO Aloys Wobben Foundation
Since the retirement of Enercon founder Aloys Wobben, Kettwig has assumed control of Enercon although honourable mention should go to deputy CEO Nicole Fritsch-Nehring. Enercon is something of an enigma in the industry, mixing a conservative business outlook (it avoided exposure in China and the US) with an ambitious project strategy (the Enercon E126 7.5MW turbine).

Ignacio Martin - executive chairman, Gamesa
It has been an interesting year for Gamesa. In late 2013, it celebrated the launch of its first offshore turbine. Then it announced it was following Vestas and setting up an offshore JV with Areva. Regardless, the company appears to be doing well, with net 1H profit doubled and a strong presence the all-important Latin American market.

Anne McEntee - president and CEO GE Renewables
At face value, GE's decision to move McEntee across from its steam division to replace Vic Abate (who also moved internally) was a typical move. However, she has since proved to be a charismatic and enthusiastic proponent of the company. The question will be how she manages the integration of Alstom's wind division and the joint development of an offshore arm.

Wu Gang - chairman Goldwind
In four years, Goldwind has pushed its way past Sinovel and a difficult period of curtailment to become the undisputed number one in China with around 30% of the market. However, it has yet to make an impact in the global market despite headway in Latin America.

Jens Tommerup - CEO MHI Vestas
Former Vestas Asia chief Tommerup was selected to head up the joint venture with Mitsubishi last year. MHI Vestas has the largest turbine in the world, the V164-8MW, although Siemens has a bigger offshore order pipeline (5GW against Vestas' 1GW). Establishing itself as number two should be easy, moving into first place could be more of a challenge.

Jurgen Zeschky - CEO Nordex
Three years ago when Zeschky arrived, Nordex was on the verge of developing a 6MW offshore prototype. Zeschky took the painful decision to axe the project and focus on low wind locations, and emerging markets. Nordex is present in countries as varied as Uruguay and Pakistan. It appears to be holding its own as a pure player with a sales increase of 64% in Q1 2014, and a move into the world's top ten manufacturers.

Markus Tacke - CEO Siemens Wind Power
Last year, Tacke was another of the newcomers to the wind industry having replaced previous CEO Felix Ferlemann. As with GE's McEntee, Tacke was an internal candidate having headed up Siemens' industrial power business unit. Since then he has restructured the division bringing the onshore group under one CEO, Jan Kjaersgaard. However Kjaersgaard recently resigned alongside longstanding CTO Henrik Stiesdal. It will be interesting to see how Siemens' new CEO for energy, Lisa Davies, views the wind division.

Tulsi Tanti - CEO Suzlon Group
There is an argument that Senvion CEO Andreas Nauen should be in this space. Suzlon Group's position as a top 10 turbine manufacturer is largely down to the German manufacturer's strong performance. In India, the mothership Suzlon has appeared to overcome its struggle with a renegotiation of its debts. However, it remains to be seen how the group will manage, especially offshore where it remains a lone pure player.

Anders Runevad - CEO Vestas
Two years ago Vestas was in serious trouble. The situation is different now, but it would be charitable to attribute this to Runevad who arrived after the changes had been made and the pain felt. Despite the absence of an offshore division, Vestas is still a leader of a worldwide number one supplier with a presence in most parts of the globe. Indications are Runevad is less a visionary, more a safe pair of hands, which is probably what the company needs.

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