Vestas reclaims leading position as wind turbine manufacturer

22.02.2017
Vestas has reclaimed #1 position as turbine manufacturer 2016 (Photo: Vestas)
Vestas has reclaimed #1 position as turbine manufacturer 2016 (Photo: Vestas)

With some 8.7 GW of onshore turbines installed in 2016, Vestas has reclaimed the top spot in the annual ranking of wind turbine manufacturers. GE is placed second in the global ranking with Goldwind close behind. Installation of offshore wind turbines was led by Sewind and Siemens.

According to figures compiled by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), Vestas turbines have gained a market share of 16 % of all onshore wind installations last year. Vestas returns to the top spot thanks to strong sales in the US market. The Danish turbine manufacturer continues to pursue a global strategy with projects commissioned in 35 countries, more than any other turbine maker.

General Electric is placed second with 6.5 GW, plus 0.6 GW compared to 2015. Particularly painful: GE narrowly lost its traditional lead in the US market for newly installed turbines to Vestas. On the other hand the company managed to increase its global presence to 21 countries in 2016, up from 14 in 2015.

Chinese manufacturer Goldwind fell from first to third place with 6.4 GW in 2016. Virtually all of the company’s capacity was built in its home market, where overall installations were 22.8 GW, down 21 % from the record 29 GW in 2015.

“This years’ ranking shows why 2016 was all about mergers in the turbine-maker sector,” said David Hostert, head of wind research for BNEF. “There is now a strong breakaway group of three companies at the front, with a fairly tight field following. The upcoming merger of Siemens Wind and Gamesa will allow the joined company to catch up and create a ‘big four’ group of dominant manufacturers. Staying at the front of this pack will require both significant size and a balanced presence in the right markets.”

Spain’s Gamesa came in fourth place for onshore turbine installations with 3.7 GW, narrowly ahead of Germany’s Enercon with 3.5 GW. Both companies managed to significantly increase their overall installations compared to 2015. While one out of every two Enercon turbines was installed in Germany, almost one in three Gamesa turbines was installed in India.

Nordex returned to the top 10 in sixth place (2.7 GW), after its merger with Acciona Windpower last year. China’s Guodian United Power remained in seventh place, ahead of Siemens. The latter fell four places in the onshore ranking compared to 2015. Chinese firms Ming Yang and Envision tied for ninth place, with the difference between the two manufacturers too close to call.

Offshore turbines lead by Sewind and Siemens

Only 832 MW of new offshore wind capacity was commissioned in 2016 - a year that was dominated by installations in Asia. While 2016 was a record for new offshore wind financings for projects to be built over the next few years in Europe, the actual amount being commissioned globally last year was far below 2015’s 4.2GW. China’s Sewind, which produces Siemens offshore turbines under license in China, placed first with 489 MW. Of these, some 388 MW were Siemens turbines and 101 MW were machines of its own design. Under BNEF’s methodology, Siemens placed second with two projects, in the Netherlands and Taiwan.

Bloomberg New Energy Finance compiles its annual onshore and offshore turbine manufacturer ranking based on its own project data base and selected market sources to provide a global harmonized methodology. These figures may therefore vary from manufacturer self-reporting. Gamesa and Siemens are shown as separate companies as the merger between Siemens Wind and Gamesa is not yet finalized.

Volker Buddensiek / Bloomberg New Energy Finance

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