Offshore Wind Foundations - A USD 20bn Business Opportunity

Considering availability and abundance of favourable wind sites – the expansion of wind industry is a foregone conclusion. Riding this expansion, the offshore wind foundation industry offers massive growth opportunity for players in the offshore wind industry and the offshore ecosystem.

Wind Expansion to Offshore: A Technology Wave

A report from the leading cleantech and maritime market insight firm MEC Intelligence forecasts that the total global installed capacity of offshore wind will grow to 125 GW in 2020 from nearly 3 GW in 2010. This rapid development is driven by the gain of momentum in the European market and a surge in installed capacity in the Asia.

The need for turbine installation deeper into the sea will create demand for turbine foundations and it is expected that the offshore wind foundation industry market size will be approximately USD 20bn by 2020 growing from nearly USD 700mn in 2010.

All players in the offshore wind and maritime industry value chain need to be ready to take on the opportunity offered by offshore wind foundations while managing the risks that rapid growth offers.

Offshore Wind Foundations: Rapid Turns Ahead!

Currently, the offshore wind foundation industry is concentrated in monopile technology and has limited supply of manufacturing capacity. However, as the installations move deeper new technology will be required and a number of players with innovative designs and technologies are emerging. At the same time limited manufacturing capacity coupled with high demand and logistics issues are prompting innovative and aggressive companies to make strategic collaborations and get scale benefits by moving early.

The report from MEC Intelligence does a comprehensive analysis of the trends in completion and maps potential entrants from the steel industry, maritime ship building, and wind industry and concludes that the industry will attract intense competition and will evolve rapidly from a concentrated niche to a fragmented multitude served by diverse players.

However, the competition will be rooted in three-four dominant technologies catering to a large share of the market owing to their economic and technical feasibility. Currently, jackets and floating foundations are showing a lot of promise of cost reduction; and the analysis from MEC Intelligence predicts a strong demand for such foundations by considering the depth of the installation and regional development in the industry. The report also lists other competing promising designs and their pros and cons which need to be watched for future developments.

Benefiting from Opportunity

The exponential growth in the offshore wind foundation market is bound to attract a large number of players and investors – and companies in the supply chain need to move in early in order to shape the market and to align themselves to the most interesting opportunities regionally and technologically.

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