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Suzlon loses top spot in India wind market installations

According to reports, Suzlon Energy Ltd ceded its position as India’s top wind-turbine supplier in the year ended 31 March for the first time in at least a decade, according to figures from an industry group.

Wind World (India) Ltd, formerly known as Enercon (India) Ltd, took the top spot after installing 454 megawatts (MW) of turbine capacity last fiscal year, according to data from the Indian Wind Turbine Manufacturers’ Association. Suzlon trailed with 415 MW of installations, while ReGen Powertech Pvt. Ltd was third with 273 MW.

The rankings offered a number of surprises as new market entrants pushed aside incumbents, said Shantanu Jaiswal, a New Delhi-based wind analyst for Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

General Electric Co.’s installations surged more than 6-fold to 122 MW, the biggest jump among the companies surveyed, according to the IWTMA data. The company’s gain in orders may indicate a shift in customer preferences as GE sells turbines alone in contrast to competitors who include land acquisition and permitting as part of supply deals.

GE won orders from developers such as Greenko Group Plc that are separating project development from turbine orders to improve returns.

Suzlon, which committed India’s biggest convertible bond default in October, reported difficulties in carrying out orders due to a lack of working capital in the past three quarters. The company completed a Rs.9,500 crore debt reorganization plan last month that will allow it to execute $7 billion of orders, group chief financial officer Kirti Vagadia said in a 23 April statement.

The company’s performance last year was hampered by its debt problems and by the suspension of two government incentives, Suzlon said in an e-mailed response to questions on Friday.

“We are confident of regaining market leadership in our home market—that we helped unlock and shape from the start,” the company said. Suzlon Energy shares ended flat in Mumbai on Friday.

Vestas Wind Systems A/S, which tied with GE as the world’s biggest turbine maker, posted an 87% drop in installations to 34 MW, IWTMA figures showed. The Danish manufacturer, one of the first to enter the Indian market more than 25 years ago, focused on bigger, more profitable markets elsewhere, Jaiswal said.

In total, India wind installations dropped 47% on year to 1.7 Gw of wind capacity after the expiry of government incentives, according to IWTMA figures.

Globally, a record 48.4 Gw of new wind capacity was added in 2012, according to BNEF. A tax incentive drove a record 13.6 Gw of installations in the US, where GE commissioned 96% of its turbines and Vestas sold 40%. The US was Vestas’ biggest market.

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