Hansen details production ramp-up to 2012

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Hansen Transmissions has increased its production capacity in Belgium for wind turbine gearboxes to 7300 MW a year, following expansion of its factory at Lommel, where from April it can make 6000 MW annually, up from 2200 MW in 2006. Gearboxes for the remaining 1300 MW of turbines are made at Edegem. In the financial year ended March 31, 2008, Hansen produced gearboxes for 4208 MW of turbines, representing about 20% of the global market, up from 3795 MW the previous year. By 2012, Hansen is aiming to supply gearboxes for 14,300 MW of turbines a year following completion of factories in India (5000 MW) and China (3000 MW). Once these are running at full capacity, Belgian capacity will be 6300 MW. The company currently supplies wind turbine gearboxes to four of the top six wind turbine suppliers globally: Vestas, Gamesa, Siemens and Suzlon. It is also developing prototypes for Repower. Reporting its results for the financial year, Hansen says sales of wind turbine gearboxes reached EUR 339 million, a 27% improvement on the previous year, while sales of industrial gearboxes, made at Edegem, were EUR 82 million, a 19% increase. Company profit before financial expenses for the year was EUR 61 milliion. The 14.5% profit margin is one point down on the previous year. A fully integrated manufacturing plant at Coimbatore in India will start production in September, with 80 of the staff trained in Lommel. The start date for the factory in China, being built as part of the Beichen economic zone, is September 2009. Hansen would have produced more gearboxes last year had it not been for a "shortfall in delivery of bearings." It expects that by next year "the supply of bearings will improve as a result of new bearings capacity." With gearbox supply a serious bottleneck in the wind industry, Hansen reports a strong order book until end 2009 and is targeting 50% revenue growth this year. The company has 1894 employees, 460 of which were hired during the year. Hansen, controlled by Suzlon, has traded on the London stock exchange since December.

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