January 7, 2011 / 5:47 PM / 9 years ago

Wind turbine supplier failure leaves SSE unfazed

LONDON, Jan 7 (Reuters) - The financial collapse of a Scottish wind turbine parts plant has put 130 jobs at risk, but customer Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE.L) said on Friday it posed no threat to wind farms the utility is developing.

The subsidiary of Danish wind power company Skykon, which operates a factory in Machrihanish on the west coast of Scotland, filed for administration this week, after its parent company suspended payments in October.

Workers at the wind turbine tower manufacturing plant were told not to return to work after the holidays, said Kenny Jordan, regional officer of union Unite.

“The employees are fearful of their future, and until we have something guaranteed, there will be that anxiety,” he said.

Meanwhile, SSE said its wind farm projects were not at risk.

“This does not jeopardise the development of our wind farms. We do use a lot of different manufacturers,” a spokeswoman for SSE said.

The union is set to meet on Monday with Skykon employees and administrator Ernst & Young to offer assistance and to receive more information on the future of the site.

The Skykon subsidiary has already attracted some offers from potential buyers, a spokesman for Ernst & Young said, without giving further details.

“We are currently reviewing the facility’s financial position and order book with a view to assessing its immediate trading prospects,” said Ernst & Young’s Andrew Davison in a statement.

Danish competitor Vestas (VWS.CO) sold the plant to Skykon in 2009, but a spokesman said the company had no plans to repurchase it.

Skykon had planned to treble jobs at the Scottish plant and to expand production capacity.

Vestas itself said in October that it planned to cut around 3,000 jobs as demand for wind turbines did not meet previous expectations. [ID:nLDE6650QH]

Reporting by Karolin Schaps, editing by Jane Baird

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