Importing components from Europe and Asia can be costly and lengthy. New wind power component suppliers need to secure manufacturing capacity strategies now if they are going to seize their share of this evolving market.
AWEA’s end of year press statement showed that not only did the wind energy industry survive a tumultuous year but actually laid the groundwork to return to strong order taking and large scale installations in 2011. To add to that the decisions make on offshore wind power have buoyed a once highly niche industry area into one that has the potential to be as great if not greater than what is currently installed on land.
Combined with the increased federal support, high profile investment in a dedicated offshore grid off the east coast, reforms set to change the way that transmission is handled and the fact that “87 percent of Americans want wind energy,” 2011 looks set to be a great year for wind power.
The challenges faced though to the OEM’s and their Tier 1 and 2 suppliers are tricky. They need to become increasing adaptive, showing the ability to ramp up production based on customer demand, while maintaining a high level of quality in their products. All this while fighting to keep production domestic, proving that they can not only compete with Chinese and European factories but deliver at the right cost in shorter lead times.
Suppliers are learning how to apply robust lean manufacturing strategies to reduce costs whilst they deepen supplier relations. Enjoying productive conversations not only with your immediate customer, but understand the changing needs of the utility or independent power producer will ensure that you can position yourself in the right place to make business decision on facts rather than guesswork.
In April in Detroit, Wind Energy Update is hosting the 2nd annual US Wind Turbine Supply Chain conference, building off the inaugural event that attract over 300 delegates on site. The leading OEMs are represented at the conference to establish an industry blueprint of what it takes to succeed as a trusted supplier in the North American wind energy industry.
Kevin Hazel, VP of Supply Chain Management for the Americas Region, Siemens Wind Energy
Bob Veideman, Sourcing Leader – Renewables, GE Energy
Perry Wozny, Director – Strategic Procurement, Acciona Energy North America
Steve Spethmann, Supply Chain Director, Suzlon
Dan McDevitt, VP Supply Management, Nordex USA
Matthew Carr, Strategic Procurement Manager, Mitsubishi Power Systems Americas
Learn to develop deeper relationships with long term suppliers, how to cope with order fluctuations and demands for greater manufacturing flexibility and reduce your risks with carefully selected strategic partnerships.