Iberdrola Renewables and Areva are hoping to play a key role in France’s offshore wind energy industry by teaming up to compete in upcoming tenders being offered by the government.
The two companies have signed a strategic partnership agreement under which Areva will be the sole supplier of wind turbines for projects developed by Iberdrola. They are planning to compete for two of the country’s five offshore zones offered in the first phase of bidding.
Iberdrola Renewables is the largest wind energy company in the world and has so far concentrated much of its efforts in the European wind sector on the UK. The agreement with Areva will allow it to diversify into France, which plans to reach 6 GW of wind capacity by 2020.
Areva has described the deal as “a key step” in its European development strategy.
Iberdrola has a pipeline of around 10 GW in offshore wind projects across Europe. It will use Areva’s 5 MW rated M5000 wind turbine, for which Areva has so far taken 600 MW of orders.
“The development of offshore wind projects is one of the key areas of growth for Iberdrola Renewables and we are now assessing major projects in the UK, Germany and France,” said Keith Anderson, chief executive of Iberdrola’s Global Offshore Division. “Areva has a very strong presence in Europe and is a major developer of offshore wind turbines, making it the ideal partner to explore these projects with.”