Opportunities and Challenges for Automobile Component Manufacturers to Enter the Wind Energy Value Chain

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The wind industry in the United States has been growing rapidly over the past decade, fueled by climate change concerns, financial incentives, performance improvements and a wave of investments in “green” technology. Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) of wind turbines, both foreign and domestic, are expanding their production capacity to better serve the U.S. market. This growth in manufacturing is leading to constraints on the supply of some wind turbine components, presenting an opportunity for new player to enter the industry. Auto component suppliers, in particular, are interested in this potential opportunity in renewable energy as their own industry declines.

The purpose of this Masters Project has three components. First, to assess the opportunity for auto component suppliers to enter the wind energy value chain. Second, to identify the challenges and barriers that firms face as they transition into the wind industry. And, finally, to offer potential market entry strategies. This research found that there are opportunities for auto component manufacturers to begin delivering parts for wind turbines; however, they are limited by a number of factors including the capabilities and resources of firms in auto manufacturing, significant differences in production volumes between the two industries, the size and scale of wind turbine components, and policy-dependent development cycles that drive inconsistent demand for wind turbine equipment.






Richards, Elise (2009). Opportunities and Challenges for Automobile Component Manufacturers to Enter the Wind Energy Value Chain. Master's project, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/1558.

Dukes student scholarship is made available to the public using a Creative Commons Attribution / Non-commercial / No derivative (CC-BY-NC-ND) license.