GE wind energy looks to global expansion

General Electric looking to grow its wind energy business by increasing installations of wind turbines globally while providing services such as data analytics to improve their performance, a top company energy executive said on Wednesday.


The U.S. conglomerate plans to have a presence with its wind turbine business in 35 or more countries next year, up from eight in 2003.

Anne McEntee, chief executive officer of GE’s renewable energy business, pointed to the importance of diversifying into different countries to take advantage of where energy demand and policy are encouraging.

“We have been putting a big focus on expanding our presence globally,” McEntee said in an interview as GE on Wednesday commemorated the installation of its 25,000th wind turbine. “As you look at policy around the world, you are going to have ups and downs in various countries.”

GE does not disclose revenue for its wind business, which is part of its Power & Water segment, whose other products include gas turbines and generators. Last year, GE ranked as the world’s fifth-biggest wind-turbine supplier, according to Navigant Research.

GE is increasingly using software and data analysis throughout its industrial businesses to improve performance and efficiency of its machines so it can reap more service revenue. The company offers a product designed to help wind farm operators raise output by up to 5 percent by optimizing performance based on environmental conditions.

“Our view is with technology advancements, the turbine that you buy today will run better tomorrow,” McEntee said.

GE said in October it expected a “very strong” fourth-quarter overall, including a big jump in wind turbine shipments. GE said at the time it expected shipments of about 3,000 wind turbines for 2014 overall.