Vestas plans to hire 100 in Pueblo

Vestas has reached an agreement to supply wind towers to other companies over the next two years, creating 100 jobs in Pueblo by the end of March, the company said Wednesday.

Vestas said it plans to ramp up operations at its Pueblo tower factory after signing an agreement to supply towers for “a number of non-Vestas wind power projects.”

Manufacturing based on the agreement could use as much as 25 percent of the factory’s production capacity.

“Vestas is continuously evaluating its manufacturing footprint and opportunities to utilize the current production capacity better,” Vestas COO Jean-Marc Lechêne said. “Producing components for third parties is part of this strategy, and although we have had other smaller orders, this new agreement is the first major step in realizing this plan.”

The extension of the wind Production Tax Credit by Congress earlier this month played an important role in securing the contract, said Tony Knopp, vice president of Vestas Towers America in Pueblo.

Vestas did not disclose terms of the deal. The company will hold two job fairs for welders, assemblers and painters in Colorado Springs and Pueblo this week.

The agreement likely will not lead to hiring at Vestas’ Northern Colorado factories, according to a spokesman.

“This order only pertains to the tower factory,” he said.

Vestas cut its Colorado workforce from 1,700 to 1,200 in 2012. The company laid off about 300 employees in its Windsor and Brighton factories while it cut hours of others partly because of Congress’ inaction on the wind credit last year.

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