Wind energy is gaining a foothold in Canada's evolving energy mix. To cater to this growing sector, venture capital and joint venture partner Top Renergy has assisted Chinese company Shanghai Taisheng Wind Power Equipment (TSP), a pioneer in manufacturing wind turbine towers, to establish its first overseas facility, named TSP Canada Towers (TSPCan). Top Renergy and TSP have invested more than US$25 million in TSPCan, creating over 100 jobs in the Niagara region as of last year.
"It's a strategic decision to open a facility in North America, seeing the region's huge growth potential," says Chris Xie, CEO and president of TSPCan and Top Renergy. "Since the beginning, we have received strong support from all levels of government in Canada."
TSPCan inaugurated its 450,000 sq ft factory on an 85-hectare site in Thorold, Ontario in June 2012 to cater to TSP's long-time customers, such as Vestas, Siemens, Senvion and Goldwind.
The facility can manufacture up to 200 onshore towers annually to support 50kw to 3.5mw turbines. It is equipped with state-of-the-art assembly lines to ensure reliable product volumes and consistent quality. With additional orders received, TSPCan anticipates operating at full capacity this year.
In the second phase of its development plan, TSPCan intends to manufacture offshore wind towers and become the first offshore tower plant in North America, leveraging its location to build a dock along the Welland Canal for shipping towers worldwide.
"Top Renergy takes pride in helping TSPCan start its wind tower manufacturing business in Ontario, providing not only venture capital funding, but also hands-on industrial and managerial experience and know-how," Xie says.
Top Renergy envisions bringing more clean energy-related overseas companies into Canada to establish an "International Green Energy Industrial Park" in the Niagara region.
"Clean energy is the way of the future," Xie says. "TSPCan is here for the long run and Top Renergy will continue to play a venture capital role in supporting clean energy and other environmentally friendly industries to help make our world cleaner and greener."
TSP Canada Towers / Top Renergy