Siemens Energy warns of €4.5bn loss from ailing wind turbine division

Siemens Energy expects to rack up a €4.5bn loss this year as the German group struggles to fix its ailing wind turbine business.

The Dax-listed group warned investors on Monday that resolving issues at the wind turbine division, which has been beset by technical problems as well as the inflationary pressures afflicting the rest of the industry, will prove costlier than expected.

In June, the company said the issues would cost €1bn to fix, with chief executive Christian Bruch admitting faults were “more severe than I thought possible”.

The company said the problems with Siemens Gamesa’s onshore wind turbines affected rotor blades and main bearings in the 4. X and 5. X platforms, its newest onshore models.

Jochen Eickholt, chief executive of Siemens Gamesa, gave examples of “wrinkles” in some of the layers of the turbine’s rotor blades. “A rotor blade has more than 150 layers of glass fibres. We found that in the production process some of these layers had wrinkles and this can lead to irregularities,” he said.

The company said the problems could be fixed during regular maintenance. But Eickholt admitted: “We sold turbines too quickly [that] had not been sufficiently tested.”