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Sunday, January 06, 2008
Vestas Wind Systems - Wind Turbines
Image: courtesy of Vestas Wind Systems (www.vestas.com)

The Market Leader In Wind Power

Vestas Wind Systems, headquartered in Randers, Denmark, installed its first wind turbine in 1979. There were just 60 people employed at Vestas in 1987, but today the company has grown to have a global work force of more than 14,500 employees. Vestas Wind Systems holds the first place in global wind turbine sales with a 2006 28% worldwide market share (BTM Consult ApS) . They have installed 33,500 wind turbines since their founding in 1979. In their Q3 2007 Report, they indicated their current strategic goal is a 30-32% global market share by the end of 2008. The current revenue mix is Europe (67.6%), Americas (24.6%), Asia-Pacific (7.8%).

Vestas is one of the top European investment 'buy' stocks because of its significant growth prospects over the next twelve years and beyond. It is a pure wind power company and tracks the growth in this sector with 100% correlation. Vestas has been implementing cost savings in its manufacturing infrastructure to lesson the impact of the devaluation of the U.S. dollar. They have moved some manufacturing to the United States (towers) and some casting and machining to China. Vestas is well positioned to respond to the huge demand in the world market for wind turbines and are anticipating the infrastructure changes required to meet the growth challenges. Based on yesterdays closing price in Copenhagen, an investment in Vestas shares 12 months ago returned a 134% increase in share price.

Vestas received two very large orders recently. One was from Horizon Wind Energy in the United States (100% owned by Energias de Portugal, S.A.) for 242 V-82 1.65 MW wind turbines (21 December 2007). The second order (January 4, 2008) was for 232 V52 850 kW wind turbnes from China's China Guangdong Nuclear Wind Power Co. Ltd, a leader in Chinese wind farms.

The Vestas first 9 months (end Q307) revenue was 2.98 billion Euros versus the first 9 months 2006 of 2.46 billion Euros, a 21.1 % increase in a year. Profit after tax for the first 9 months 2007 was 134 million Euros versus 24 million Euros for the first 9 months 2006. The order backlog on 30 September 2007 was 4.1 billion Euros versus 3.1 billion Euros in 2006.

Currently wind generated electricity represents about 1% of all worldwide energy produced. By 2020 as a result of initiatives in the European Parliament, and from additional demand from the United States and China, wind generated electricity is expected to represent at least 10% of global energy production. Vestas Wind Systems has calculated that the current 75,000 MW of installed global capacity will need rise to at least 1,000,000 MW by 2020 to meet targets.

There are four models of Vestas wind turbines in their product offering, and these are the .85 , 1.65, 2.0 and 3.0 MW models. The .85 MW (850 kW) model is utilised where there is restricted access, complex terrain or noise considerations. The 3.0 MW model takes advantage of optimum wind conditions and has been engineered to reduce the operating cost per kW (power), taking advantage of the newest materials for blade design and blade profile in areas of high sustained wind.

Vestas Wind Systems (VWS) trades on the Copenhagen, Xetra DAX (913769), the London LSE, and four other German exchanges. The primary market is Copenhagen (Danish Krona) and Vestas closed (Jan 4/08) at 534.00 DK with a 52 wk high of 557.00 DK (3 Jan 08) and a 52 wk low of 228.00 DK (5 Jan/07). The PE for Vestas is currently 59.8 and the Vestas Board proposes to not pay a 2007 dividend in favour of internal investment for growth.

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