GE’s renewable energy business made an operating loss in Q1 2019 compared with a profit in the same period in 2018, a result its boss, Jérôme Pécresse, said was affected by ‘one-off’ factors and by spending on R&D.
The company said orders of US$2.4Bn were up slightly and noted it had secured the first contract for its new 5-MW Cypress onshore wind turbine in the period and signed an agreement to install the first Haliade-X 12 MW offshore wind turbine (the turbine is being installed in Port of Rotterdam for testing).
Revenues of US$1.6Bn were down 3% with equipment down 7%, declines that were partially offset by services, which were up 9%.
Profit was negatively impacted by liquidated damages and contract terminations in 2018, but excluding those items, business was still down year-over-year, principally as a result of higher R&D investment in the Haliade-X, joint venture consolidation, and pricing. This was partially offset by cost reduction and higher volumes.
Mr Pécresse said, “We continue the pace of our R&D investments and are seeing significant progress in technology as a result. We achieved notable milestones in both our Haliade-X and Cypress platforms in the quarter. Pricing continues to stabilise as the industry ramps up for PTC-driven deliveries this year and next.
“Our backlog is up 16%. Negative year-over-year revenue and operating profit results are as expected. We have a very strong delivery schedule for the next three quarters and we remain on track to deliver on guidance for the year.”