Offshore wind power in France

GDF SUEZ, VINCI and CDC Infrastructure are bidding on four of the five zones identified by the State as holding potential: Courseulles-sur-Mer (Calvados), Dieppe-Le Tréport (Seine-Maritime, Somme), Fécamp (Seine-Maritime) and Saint-Brieuc (Côtes d’Armor).

GDF SUEZ, VINCI and CDC Infrastructure will combine their complementary expertise in renewable energies and the construction of major infrastructures, to put forth the best bid, whether with regard to economics, energy and environment.

The consortium will furthermore draw upon a number of major and recognised industrial partners, in designing and producing offshore wind farm plants: AREVA (Courseulles-sur-Mer, Dieppe-Le Tréport and Fécamp) and SIEMENS (Saint-Brieuc).

The consortium estimates that 80% of the business generated by the offshore wind farm market (procurement, production, sub-contracting) will be able to be developed in France, thus contributing to the economic development of the related regions and the creation of a full-fledged training sector. The resulting jobs, necessarily local, will be in wind farm construction (3- to 6-year phase) and the subsequent operation (20 years and more).

Gérard Mestrallet, Chief Executive Officer of GDF SUEZ, stated: "GDF SUEZ is a central figure in renewable energies. The Group, leader in wind energy in France, wish to bring with its partners all of its expertise as an integrated energy generation expert in order to develop this ambitious offshore wind turbines project and contribute to the emergence of a French industrial chain."

Xavier Huillard, Chief Executive Officer of VINCI, stated: "VINCI provides its partners with comprehensive know-how in finance packaging, fully-mastered technical solutions to address the complete range of operating conditions underwater and on the ocean floor, and the ability to involve the stakeholders in the major infrastructure projects to which we contribute. Our presence guarantees performance and efficiency in this far-reaching call for tenders in offshore wind power development."

Augustin de Romanet, Chief Executive Officer of the Caisse des Dépôts, stated: "Via its subsidiary CDC Infrastructure, the Caisse des Dépôts group is proud to take part, along with its partners, in the development of off-shore wind energy infrastructures, a crucial project to alter our country’s "energy mix" in favour of renewable energies."

With a capacity of over 1,000 MW in wind energy already installed, GDF SUEZ is the leading generator of wind energy in France and has set out an ambitious wind energy development plan. The Group specifically aims to reach 2,000 MW installed onshore wind farms by 2016. In the field of offshore wind energy, the Group boasts experience and know-how recognised for over 10 years and is already involved in nearly 30 projects of this kind across Europe. Its specialised subsidiaries such as INEO, Fabricom and Tractebel Engineering, are able to offer solutions for every stage of offshore wind energy development. In France, GDF SUEZ has been deploying an offshore wind farm project "Deux Côtes" for the past several years, in the Dieppe-Le Tréport zone, as well as a number of other projects in the Courseulles-sur-Mer and Fécamp zones.

VINCI, the world leader in infrastructure concession and construction will, for France’s offshore wind energy bid, mobilise the expertise of VINCI Concessions in developing large-scale public service projects, along with the know-how specially developed by the teams at VINCI Construction Major Projects, VINCI Construction France, EMCC (a specialist in maritime and river construction), Entrepose Contracting (specialised in pipeline installation in coastal waters through its subsidiary Geocean) and the companies at VINCI Energies.

CDC Infrastructure is the direct investment subsidiary of Caisse des Dépôts, it primarily invests in equity in infrastructure assets that are critical for French economic development and the attractiveness of its economy and which generate recurrent profitability over the long term. It takes minority stakes in companies which manage mature assets or new projects funded in particular in the form of public-private partnerships (PPP) or concessions. It is active in 4 sectors: transport, energy, telecommunications and the environment.

GDF SUEZ develops its businesses around a model based on responsible growth to take up today’s major energy and environmental challenges: meeting energy needs, ensuring the security of supply, combating climate change and optimizing the use of resources. The Group provides highly efficient and innovative solutions to individuals, cities and businesses by relying on diversified gas-supply sources, flexible and low-emission power generation as well as unique expertise in four key sectors: liquefied natural gas, energy efficiency services, independent power production and environmental services. GDF SUEZ employs 218,350 people worldwide and achieved revenues of ?84.5 billion in 2010. The Group is listed on the Brussels, Luxembourg and Paris stock exchanges and is represented in the main international indices: CAC 40, BEL 20, DJ Stoxx 50, DJ Euro Stoxx 50, Euronext 100, FTSE Eurotop 100, MSCI Europe, ASPI Eurozone and ECPI Ethical Index EMU.

VINCI is the world leader in concessions and construction, employing close to 180,000 people in some 100 countries. We design, build, finance and manage facilities that improve everyday life: the systems that transport us, the public and private buildings in which we live and work, the urban developments that create and improve our communities, and the water, energy and communication networks vital to human existence. As a private sector company contributing to the development of society, VINCI successfully blends a business focus on today’s priorities with the long-term sustainability of its accomplishments and integrated concessions-construction business model.