France offshore wind mission 2014 once again remarkably successful06.11.2014
In October 2014, Transfer LBC organized a rewarding trade mission on the offshore wind energy sector in collaboration with FME and the Dutch Embassy in Paris. After a successful mission in 2012, France has hosted again a considerable number of prestigious Dutch companies, which travelled to the country in order to explore the French market and take the opportunity to offer their services to important companies of the sector.
Considering Dutch expertise in the field of offshore wind, highly valued worldwide, and the opportunities that the French market offers in this aspect, the act was a significant occasion for both parties. In fact, they were given the chance to develop their matchmaking, and eventually concentrate themselves in the projects that will result from it, as the last mission showed two years ago.
A group of 10 highly acclaimed Dutch enterprises from the offshore wind sector travelled last Tuesday 21st of October to France in order establish contact with more than 25 French enterprises active in the sector. The mission started literally “offshore”, with a boat cruise on the Seine accompanied by a dinner, where the participants were able to make their first contact. In this environment, Mr Rogier Blokdijk, Program Manager of the FME, and Mr Gerald Baal, coordinator of the whole project and CEO of Transfer LBC, welcomed all members.
The next morning, the mission continued at the residence of the Dutch Ambassador in Paris, Mr Ed Kronenburg. The delegation was warmly received by the Dutch economic and business advisor Mr Huub Buise. The program started with an introduction of EDF by the manager of industrial relations Mr Laurent Smaggue and the Secretary of Maritime Activities Mr Michel Benoit. It was followed by the presentation of the FME by its program manager and responsible of the project Mr Rogier Blokdijk.
After the presentations and an informal lunch, the Dutch participants were enthusiastically received by the members of EDF for individual meetings, where they had the possibility to discuss different chances for collaboration. This intensive first day was concluded by an informal cocktail and sincere thanking words from Mr Blokdijk. The second mission day continued in Caen, the North West coast of France, crucial for offshore wind energy developments. In fact, the first selected areas for the construction of wind farms in France are located on the Normandy and Brittany coast, close to the UK. The journey started at “La Miriade”, in an ideal atmosphere characterized by scientific, industrial, economic and social innovation. After having presented the region of Normandy and the upcoming offshore wind projects in there and in the harbor, the participants warmly received three notable personalities with great expertise in the French energy sector. These were Ports Normands Associés (PNA), the West Normandy Marine Energy (WMNE) and the Chamber of Commerce, who introduced their know-how to the participants.
The Dutch and French participants starred exhaustive B2B meetings after a break where all members could peacefully discuss business activities. These gatherings were crucial for both parties involved, since previously selected enterprises that were interested in specific projects could individually discuss partnerships and alliances with their fellow counterparties. Indeed, the first subsequent meetings have been already planned, following this first contact. A lunch buffet closed the session of “rendez-vous”.
After a complete week of great success between the Dutch and French wind shore energy sectors, we can look back at a fruitful and positive mission. The developments of the French offshore wind market were openly discussed, and Dutch enterprises got in touch with influential French enterprises of the sector. Most importantly, they established the initial contact of a future collaboration and signed the first contracts. The mission has served as an introductory period for further cooperation between both complementary parties, and as a start of new prosperous projects.
In the first quarter of 2015, a new offshore wind mission to France will take place with the participation of GDF Suez. If you are interested in receiving more information, we kindly invite you to contact us.