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03.12.2020 More than 10 GW in independent turbine maintenance

In these pandemic-dominated times, it’s easy for positive news to get lost in the background. But good news does still happen, as this major anniversary for Deutsche Windtechnik shows: By the end of November 2020, the total nominal output of all wind turbines maintained by Deutsche Windtechnik will exceed 10 GW.  

This is a major milestone in the company’s history. It may well be of significant interest to other operators, too, as they ultimately stand to benefit from this successful track record of independent service worldwide. It is only the assertiveness of the ISP (independent service provider) that has created healthy competition in the maintenance market. This is a significant factor for maintenance cost structures and therefore for the overall success of wind energy. “We are very proud of our ability to provide maintenance for more than 10 GW. We’ve only been able to achieve this together with our customers and partners,” said Director Matthias Brandt. “10 GW is not just a sign of our economic stability. Above all, we are motivated by technology, we love finding solutions, we enjoy co-designing and we always view our work and activities as part of the process of the pivot towards 100% renewable energy worldwide. The fact that we can contribute on such a large scale is exhilarating.

Willingness to change and technological progress   

A look back at the first few years after the founding of the company: “We too started small. In 2007, we had the privilege of signing our first maintenance contract for three NM60 turbines and, by the way, we still provide service for that customer for the same three turbines. Years of steady growth followed – initially mainly in Germany, and from 2012 onwards, increasingly at an international level,” said Matthias Brandt. “It has always been important to us to achieve growth in a gradual, well-considered way, rather than at the expense of our service quality and our employees. But we always think ahead with technological progress and a willingness to change.” Over time, mergers with other successful ISPs have also contributed to growth, for example with Windstrom Service, seebaWind, GFW and, this year, with psm WindService.  

International growth trajectory    

International service has also played a major part in achieving the 10 GW maintenance milestone. In particular, there were new contracts in the USA, Poland and Sweden that ensured we passed the 10 GW threshold this year. Of the 10 GW under maintenance contracts, 11% are in Spain and 9% in the UK. In the USA, Deutsche Windtechnik signed new maintenance contracts amounting to more than 1 GW this year.  

Exotic technologies are the exception  

Like new countries, new technologies are only being added gradually. The most recent additions are GE and Mitsubishi, for which we have signed contracts for the first time exclusively in the USA. “It may sound hard to believe, but we don’t just try to accelerate our growth, we also slow it down,” said Matthias Brandt regarding the growth strategy. “We’re still a long way from covering all technologies in all countries. We need to ensure that documents, support, resources, employees, training and many other factors are properly available before we can offer service contracts in good conscience. There are also new countries in regions such as Asia or Central and South America where our service isn’t available yet. We only provide less-common, “exotic” turbines with partial services on an individual basis, for example with spare part sales, training, technical support or other modules.”