Offshore Wind Company Adwen To Cut Jobs By More Than Half

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German offshore wind turbine manufacturer Adwen has announced this week it will initiate internal restructuring, cutting 260 jobs as part of parent company Siemens Gamesa’s already announced restructuring plans.

Rewind all the way back to March of 2015 and Spanish wind energy company Gamesa announced that it was teaming with French multi-national Areva in a joint venture to create an offshore wind turbine designer, manufacturer, installer, and operator. The resulting company, Adwen, had an immediate positive impact on Gamesa’s finances, resulting in a €18.5 million net profit bump.

Fast forward to November of last year, and newly-formed Siemens Gamesa announced that, only a few months after the two companies had merged, it would begin restructuring to firm up its financial position. Part of the restructuring was the announcement of job cuts to 6,000 positions across 24 countries. According to Siemens Gamesa at the time, “This plan, which will be implemented in the coming months, is a necessary step to strengthen the group and consolidate its position as a market leader.”

It’s unsurprising, therefore, that Adwen was directly impacted by this decision, and on Tuesday the subsidiary company announced that it would be cutting 260 jobs from its staff of 480. The company’s planned restructuring is expected to be completed by the end of September 2020.

In that time, Adwen has accomplished much — including the delivery of the world’s longest wind turbine blade (seen below) with turbine rotor blade supplier LM Wind Power.

Adwen’s 5 megawatt (MW) offshore wind turbine platform currently supplies three offshore wind farms in the German North Sea, and a fourth is currently under construction in the Baltic Sea, bringing the company’s 5 MW offshore capacity up to just under 1 gigawatt (GW).

However, despite the booming offshore wind industry, Adwen has not been able to capitalize, as wind turbines by necessity and economics continue to grow in scale. As such, Adwen will therefore now refocus on servicing existing Adwen turbines and be functionally integrated into Siemens Gamesa.

“The lack of new orders has put Adwen into this difficult situation. In conjunction with excess capacities and the increasing cost pressure in the wind industry, the intended changes are inevitable,” explained Hans-Rolf Huppert, Managing Director and CFO of Adwen.

“The anticipated personnel adjustment is a hard cut for Adwen and a challenging situation for the affected employees and their families,” added Carsten König, Managing Director and CEO of Adwen. “We will be working closely and in a constructive way with the workers’ council on concluding a balance of interest and a fair social plan as fast as possible.”

Adwen management will now begin negotiations with the workers’ council to implement the job cuts.

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Joshua S Hill

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