Deal Watch: Vestas expands Portland presence

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Thursday, January 01, 2009

s_vestas1201Vestas expands orders and Portland presence

Until early December, the biggest news coming from Vestas Wind Systems, a Denmark-based windmill company with its North American headquarters in Portland, was that Washington state’s largest utility, Puget Sound Energy, had placed an order for 22 of its wind turbine generators.

Announced in November, the deal will add nearly $100 million worth of windmills to the 127 already online at PSE’s Wild Horse Wind and Solar Facility east of Ellensburg. When all 149 are up and running in late 2009, the windmills will be able to produce enough electricity to power some 70,000 homes.

But that order, one of Vestas’ smaller sales in the U.S. in 2008, was quickly blown to the side when the company announced it would be building a new headquarters for Vestas Americas in Portland, with a tentative completion date of late 2011.

Vestas revealed its plans Dec. 1 for a $250 million, nearly 600,000-square-foot, LEED platinum-certified headquarters (the location was undisclosed). Along with the new facility, which would consolidate several different operations now spread across the city, Vestas’ expansion plans would add 850 new white-collar jobs. The company currently employs about 350 of its 1,200 North American workers in Portland.

But while the company has created a name for itself in the Rose City and helped strengthen its reputation as a green giant, Vestas isn’t expanding in Portland entirely out of the goodness of its heart. City and state leaders have been working tirelessly on a package of incentives worth an estimated $30 million to entice the turbine manufacturer to deepen its roots in Oregon, first planted here in 2002.

Among the city’s proposed offerings is a $10 million loan, forgivable if Vestas follows through on its investment plans and promise of creating 850 jobs, and a $1 million break on systems development charges. And at the state level, Gov. Ted Kulongoski included a $15 million enticement for Vestas in his 2009-11 budget, which will drift onto lawmakers’ desks in the upcoming legislative session.                                             


ND Q4 Bally Gaming (NV) CoolSign/Planar Systems (Beaverton) 11/19
ND Q1 Entrance Controls (WA) 1Pointe (Portland) 11/10
ND Q1 FleetPride (TX) E.H. Burrell Co. (Salem) 11/10
ND ND Heartland Payment Systems (NJ) Chockstone (Portland) 11/19
ND ND LTC Global (Medford) United Insurance Group Agency/Penn Treaty American (PA) 11/10
ND ND Precision Castparts (Portland) Hackney Ladish (TX) 11/17
ND ND Providence Health & Services Oregon/Providence Health & Services (WA) Willamette Falls Hospital (Oregon City) 11/17
ND ND TRM Copy Centers/Skyview Capital (CA) Solvport (Portland) 11/25
ND ND Guardian Management (Portland) Atherton-Newport Investment (CA) 11/19

$2.9M Lake Road Medical (Portland) 16,800 sq feet (Milwaukie)/The Maginnis Family (Portland) 11/18
$2.7M David Berland Yeon Business Center Building (Portland)/Yeon Building 9 (Portland) 11/25
$1.9M Douglas Stromberg 44,000-sq-foot industrial facility (Donald)/Ferdinand Beernink and Judith Young 11/24
$1.5M Belvoir Apartments LLC (Portland) Belvoir Apartments (Portland)/GAFCO Properties (Portland) 11/10
$1.4M Foxstar Invesments (Portland) 20 units at FoxStar Apartments (Portland)/Portland FoxStar LP (Portland) 11/18
$1.3M Gunderson Properties III (Portland) 8,726 sq feet/industrial (Portland)/NWH Enterprises (Portland) 11/17
$1.3M Metro Windser (Portland) Rose Garden Apartments (Portland) Malcom Johnson (Portland) 11/10
$1.2M 2820 LLC (Portland) Weathering Heights Apartments (Portland)/J. Barnes (NV) 11/17
$1.1M Megra Construction (Portland) 18,000 sq ft/land (Portland)/Marcus Harris & Beagle, Burke & Assoc. (Portland) 11/17
$870,000 Arum Investment (Indonesia) 7,125 sq ft (Portland)/Kathleen French 11/18
$740,000 Van and Laura Rasmussen 10 units at The West Cliff Apartments (West Linn)/Michael Eaton 11/18
$675,000 Don and Bonnie Thomas 13,500 sq feet/Quality Millwork (Portland)/ JMC Properties (CA) 11/7
$415,000 John Galt Holdings (West Linn) 1,187 sq feet at Willamette Marketplace (West Linn)/VPC-OR West Linn (CA) 11/18
ND Stark Woodland Properties (Happy Valley) 17 units at Stark Woodland Apartments (Portland)/Honey LLC (Portland) 11/18
ND Willamette University (Salem) 305 acres of the Zena Forest (Salem)/ The Deumling family (Salem) 11/7

$119M (loans) Monaco Coach (Coburg)/Kay Toolson Bank of America (NC), Ableco Finance (NY) 11/3
$5M (drilling contracts) Scheffler Northwest (WA)/Michael Zeman ODOT (Salem) 11/12
$4M (renovation contract) O’Brien Constructors (Portland)/Pat O’Brien Martin Hospitality/Stephanie Inn at Cannon Beach (Cannon Beach) 11/21
$2M (combat boot order) LaCrosse Footwear (Portland)/Joseph Schneider U.S Army 11/17
$618,000 (foreclosed home acquisition funds) City of Eugene U.S. Dept of Housing and Urban Development 11/20
ND (order for 22 windmills) Vestas-American Wind Technology (Portland)/ Jens Søby Puget Sound Energy (WA) 11/10

List researched by Jon Bell

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There’s a fascinating article in the December issue of the Harvard Business Review about a profound power shift taking place in business and society. It’s a long read, but the gist revolves around the tension between “old power” and “new power” as a driver of transformation. Here’s an excerpt:

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