Tim Petersen
Managing Director
ROBUR BALTIC

06 March 2020

ROBUR BALTIC, with headquarters in Tuchom (Poland) and Vilnius (Lithuania), offers professional wind energy services for the Polish and neighboring markets, from erection and maintenance of WTGs to HSE and mechanical services.  

 

ROBUR BALTIC recently became part of the wider ROBUR family, congratulations – in what position does that place you to serve the local and European market?

Indeed ROBUR BALTIC is now a member of ROBURp, made up of several companies in the energy and other industries, and we can benefit from the knowledge and expertise of our sister companies. ROBUR BALTIC is a wind energy services company and in fact one of the top service providers globally. We have business entities in Poland, Germany, Russia, Estonia and Chile and are busy expanding into Ukraine at the moment.

Our main focus is on installation, service and maintenance for both onshore and offshore wind energy projects. Being fairly nimble we can easily adapt to our clients’ needs, from remote solitary projects to larger scale implementations, come rain or shine.  

You are originally Danish, what prompted you to set up shop here in Poland and what specific benefits do you still see here? 

Well, for one thing the cost of starting a business in Poland was significantly lower compared to Denmark, with fantastic access to talented employees as well. The Polish market has been very quiet for the last two years as you know, but we still see many opportunities surrounding the development of onshore and even offshore wind projects.

Poland is in an energy transition period towards a low-carbon economy which is largely based on energy-saving ideas and efforts to increase efficiency. It has become clear for everyone that wind simply makes sense, and has become competitive on a merchant basis, though of course we are all waiting for the regulatory framework to become more favorable.

A significant amount of the Polish population is reliant on the coal industry for jobs. Do you believe that there will be enough RES installed capacity to supplement and replace all of the jobs the coal industry can offer? 

I do believe that the renewables sector can create enough jobs. The real challenge is the grid as big powerlines are very limited in Poland. A significant amount of infrastructure development is required, which will in turn generate jobs, an entire ecosystem needs to be built around it.

 

In terms of offshore wind projects, it is a brand new sector that calls for its own specific skill set, much of which will be coming from abroad. Nevertheless, various Polish service providers also stand to benefit.

 

Do you experience the business climate in Poland being competitive? 

We are operating in a very competitive climate, wind reached a form of maturity and there are many companies that offer the same services as we do. What differentiates us in the market is our advantage of sharing knowledge and expertise with other companies in our group, and the fact that we have been around for so long. 

Offshore wind energy production is expected to start in 2025, are you already engaging in discussions with project developers? 

Not really, it is still much too early in the process for us to get involved. The development process is quite lengthy, and we will only be able to get involved in discussions in the last steps of the process. We need to know who the manufacturers and developers are going to be before we can go into action. At this point it is more an idea than a reality, and in the meantime we are fighting for more onshore business given how dire the past two years have been for the industry.

The December auction is opening a few doorways for us, soon developers are starting to put out project lists and choose suppliers. Depending on available manpower and project scope we can choose the ones we are keen on, and we have ongoing tenders with two of the main turbine manufacturers. 

And how are you addressing the challenging legislation that all but halted new onshore projects in the past couple years in Poland? Are you switching your attention to other countries? 

Over the last two years, we worked on various projects in Chile, Germany and Turkey. When deciding on taking on projects, we will consider the ease of logistics in the country and how we get our tools into the country of operation. The availability of the right skills in the country to establish the right team is also important to us. Poland is our base though and we are here to stay. 

What are ROBUR BALTIC’s strategy and objectives moving forward? 

 

There are continuously changes in technology and it is important for our teams to always stay up to date with innovations and work side by side with manufacturers.

 

We always provide training to our teams to ensure that we have the skills required. Turbines are getting bigger and bigger which means that the tools we use get bigger, among the various investments that we have to make. We have to always ensure that we hold the necessary skills, knowledge and tools to be able to best serve our clients. Looking at how the market is evolving, I remain optimistic for the future of ROBUR BALTIC in Poland. 

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