Text Edison Ong, Manilla Bulletin
Where the wind blows, money flows. Vestas Wind Systems, a leading supplier of wind power solutions in the world, has looked to the East where business opportunities abound.
A beneficiary of foreign investment inflows in the Asia Pacific region is the Philippines. It begins with the opening of the Vestas Information Technology (IT) hub at the heart of the country’s premier business and financial district.
Hosted in Makati City, it is one of four Vestas IT centers across the globe including Denmark, Singapore and the USA (Portland).
Then it accelerates employment generation and flows onward to income growth.
Vestas has a global presence in more than 30 countries and a yearly turnover of 4.5 billion Euro. The industry has experienced a 30 percent increase per year in the last 5 – 6 years and the growth rate is expected to be at the same level in the coming years, according to company information materials furnished InfoTech.
But this Danish company is no stranger to the Philippines. Vestas Asia Pacific is the Asia Pacific business unit of Vestas, the world leader in wind technology. Its Asia Pacific head office is located in Singapore and has sales and service offices in Korea, India, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Taiwan and the Philippines. In 2009, the company had a cumulative installed capacity of 33 MW in the Philippines.
According to Vestas officials, the establishment of the Vestas Manila IT hub will support the company’s goal to accelerate its capabilities in harnessing wind power, a highly viable solution to the world’s long-term energy demands.
“The sharp rise in energy consumption calls for a sustainable resource that does not create more greenhouse gases, pollution or waste for future generations. Wind power is a renewable, predictable and clean source of energy. In addition, substantial capacity can be built up quickly, offering the energy independence demanded by the world’s largest and fastest-growing economies,” says Torben Bonde, Chief Information Officer (CIO) of Vestas Wind Systems A/S.
Bonde said the Vestas Services Philippines, Inc., the registered name for the information technology hub, will support Vestas’ global team with IT operations and support including surveillance, service desk, operations, support and programming competencies. The local IT Hub staff will be fully integrated into the Vestas IT value chain and will have access to global tools and methodologies in Vestas’ Group IT.
“The opening of our IT hub in the Philippines will make it possible for Vestas IT to streamline its global IT services throughout Vestas’ business and enable us to operate our IT reliant business areas more efficiently,” said Bonde.
Equipped with state-of-the-art technology, Vestas’ new IT hub, as of press time, employs 25 IT professionals. The local work force is expected to reach 100 employees by the end of the year and doubles by end of 2011. When this happens, this makes it the biggest IT hub in Vestas outside Randers, Denmark.
Bonde said among other important criteria such as government support and infrastructure, Manila was chosen as the location for the new Vestas IT hub because of the skills and competencies of the local workforce.
“Filipino IT professionals’ quality of education, professional experience, cultural adaptability and good communication skills, make them a welcome addition to our global Group IT organization. Vestas is confident that with the capabilities and expertise of Filipinos, the Manila IT hub will provide valuable support to our global IT operations together with our IT employees in Denmark, Singapore and the USA,” said Bonde.