India’s Inox Wind said it is poised to launch a 3.3MW turbine that will “probably” be the country’s largest as it claimed it is well-placed to benefit from a “shortage” of wind equipment as other manufacturers struggle or go bust.
Inox told investors it will add the 3.3MW turbine to its existing 2MW platform “this financial year”.
The manufacturer, which licenses technology from AMSC of the US, said the new machine “will have a 146-metre rotor diameter which will probably be the largest … in India”.
The timing for the launch of the 3MW machine came in an upbeat presentation to financial analysts by Inox – despite reporting a 460m rupee ($6.5m) second-quarter loss – in which it appears to flag the prospects of a freer run amid multiple casualties in the Indian wind market, following the “painful transition” from tariffs to competitive auctions that’s now “virtually over”.
Inox Wind claimed India’s several years of wind market pain meant “multiple wind turbine manufacturers have either closed down or are facing severe financial issues. This has resulted in shortage of supplies of [wind turbines] in the market.
“Inox sees a significant opportunity to further leverage from these manufacturers' closure/ financial problems to increase market share,” claiming that “virtually being the lowest cost producer of wind turbines in India” will help it in auctions.
“Due to the lower intensity of competition and with our new 3.3MW world class [wind turbines], going forward, we expect to get back to normalised profit levels,” said Inox, which reported an order book of 1.3GW by the end of its last quarter.
Inox Wind – which as recently as October was asked by the Mumbai stock exchange to clarify reports of a lockout at its factories – does not specify which competitors’ misfortunes it expects to benefit from. Inox Wind's shares fell more than 5% on Friday, and at 33.50 rupees are a fraction of the 473 rupees seen when the company staged an IPO in 2015.
India’s largest domestic wind group, Suzlon, is currently under pressure to restructure its finances, but the country is also the intense focus of interest from many of the world’s biggest wind power OEMs, such as Siemens Gamesa and Vestas, none of which have indicated they plan to give up on the market.
Siemens Gamesa CEO Markus Tacke said this week he could see the Indian market returning to life after the group booked 1.2GW of orders in its most recent quarter.