ABB invests in partnership with cleantech start-up

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ABB invests in partnership with cleantech start-up

ABB Motion acquires a minority stake in WindESCo, a leading provider of analytics software to improve wind turbine performance and reliability. Venture capital investment complements ABB’s wind energy portfolio with digital offering and extends market reach beyond wind turbine inverters and services.

ABB Motion and WindESCo are entering into a strategic partnership under which ABB, through its venture capital company ABB Technology Ventures (ATV), has acquired a minority stake in the company. WindESCo, based in the U.S., is the leading provider of analysis software to improve wind turbine performance and reliability. WindESCo’s solutions strengthen ABB’s position as a key enabler of a low-carbon society and as a provider in the renewable energy sector. It will enable ABB to continuously improve the performance and reliability of wind turbines, offer complete solutions to its customers and open up new market access for its digital offering. Financial details of the investment were not disclosed.

ABB is a leading independent supplier of wind turbine converters for medium-voltage and low-voltage wind turbines. WindESCo employs about 25 people and works with 40 customers on projects in 18 countries. The company has developed market-leading, vendor-independent turbine performance monitoring software that helps to detect deviations in wind turbines, recommend corrective actions and measure the corresponding results. The company also offers a wake optimization solution that uses data from a wind turbine to optimize plant performance. With their integrated portfolio, ABB and WindESCo can now present a holistic solution approach to their customers. WindESCo leverages ABB’s electrical engineering expertise to expand its software offering. At the same time, ABB is filling a gap in its wind turbine portfolio by adding a digital offering to its already digitized wind turbine converters.

"With this strategic venture capital investment, we are strengthening our market position and further advancing the energy transition. In doing so, we are further aligning our portfolio of customer solutions with renewable energy and decarbonization. ABB’s wind energy portfolio will be complemented by a strong digital offering from WindESCo, creating the conditions for both companies to leverage their strong presence in the growing wind energy market. This win-win transaction allows us to offer our customers a holistic approach, expanding ABB Motion’s service offering. We look forward to developing new synergies with WindESCo’s talented team," said Chris Poynter, head of ABB Motion’s System Drives division.

Mo Dua, CEO and founder of WindESCo, said: "The data stored in the wind turbine inverters is of great value to us. Most solutions only address the mechanical systems, but they have no significant impact on the electrical system. ABB’s financial participation and our collaboration on a technical level will allow WindESCo to expand its offering to the wind turbine electrical system with the goal of becoming the leading provider of holistic asset monitoring solutions in the wind industry. We are pleased that ABB has chosen WindESCo as its digitalization partner."

The partnership helps expand ABB’s ecosystem of innovation partners developing solutions to advance decarbonization and energy efficiency. Since 2009, ABB has made investments of approximately $400 million through its venture capital unit, focused on electrification, robotics, automation and motion control.

Translation by myScience