Wind turbine blade manufacturer LM Wind Power says it has doubled its U.S. workforce in less than six months from 350 in April to a little more than 700 in August, thanks to Congress' January extension of the production tax credit (PTC). The company adds that it expects to continue expanding into next year, employing around 1,200 people in the U.S. in 2014.
The additional staff will work in LM Wind Power's factories in Grand Forks, N.D., and Little Rock, Ark. The company says the new employees will help serve demand in the U.S. market, where LM Wind Power is seeing increased volumes from key customers following the PTC extension.
"We are pleased to see that the market is improving again following a period of low activity due to uncertainty around the PTC," comments LM Wind Power's Bill Burga Jr. "With the political framework in place, our customers are winning more business again, and we are ready to serve their demand for highly efficient quality blades for the U.S. market, adding hundreds of extra jobs. Now it is crucial that the politicians remain committed to securing a stable economic framework to enable continued industry growth and increased U.S. employment."
LM Wind Power will have around 570 employees in Grand Forks and little more than 400 in Little Rock at the end of this year, adding another 250 in 2014. With the continued expansion of the workforce, LM Wind Power's U.S. factories will be among the company's biggest. LM Wind Power operates 14 blade manufacturing plants across the Americas, Europe and Asia.