The recent takeover by yet another owner of the wind turbine tower manufacturing plant at Machrihanish in Kintyre – this time from Korean owned company, CS Wind Corporation – has seen a very welcome £27 M investment in the business from turbine manufacturers, Siemens.
Siemens and CS Wind Corp now have their eye on the contract – which seems to have been trailed as bait to sweeten the deal – to deliver the towers and turbines for the £2.56BN Beatrice offshore wind farm for the Outer Moray Firth. Beatrice is 40% owned by SSE with two international partners – one Danish and one Singaporean – and is to be a 588MW capacity, 84 turbine installation.
Interestingly, CS Wind Corporation has a connection with Vestas, the first operator at the site – departing Kintye when its subsidy period was up, in order to chase the next state subsidy on offer, in the Isle of Wight. Apparently established in 1989, in 2004 CS Wind signed a partnership agreement with Vestas Towers A/C.
The workforce at Machrihanish has recently gone up to 170 from 135 – and now the Siemens investmnet is said to be expected to see this hike to 300 in eighteen months’ time.
Campbeltown has been seduced by job numbers for the wind tower plant so many times it must be getting a tad cynical – but if this latest white knight’s promises come good, it is likely also to being inward migration to the local economy since an additional 130 jobs might not necessarily be fillable from Kintyre.
The deal is also expected to lead to the towers being constructed in Argyll for the Beatrice offshore wind array in the Moray Firth.