The decade-long fight between Enercon GmBH and its Indian arm, Wind World India, is proving to be a serious issue for the wind energy sector, as turbines with over 3,000 MW capacity have become near non-functional for want of servicing and lack of components, people close to the development told FE. According to people that FE spoke to “Old Enercon wind turbines of 800 kW capacity are lying useless in Karnataka, Maharashtra and Rajasthan. Since Enercon took Wind World India to court over transfer of technology and siphoning of funds, most of the smaller players are not getting servicing and machine components from Wind World India”. The issue has got further complicated after Wind World was dragged to the NCLT by lenders over non-payment of dues. Wind World, in which IDBI Bank is the lead banker, owes lenders Rs 3,000 crore.
The people further said, “Wind World is not providing servicing and parts for the ailing wind turbines. They even do not allow operators to bring their own people to service the wind turbines. The company has taken control of the pooling substations in the Wind Park and are using them at their whims and fancy.” However, “We have investors who are willing to take these Enercon assets, since its available cheap, and secondly they have abilities to get their work done,” the people said. Wind World officials did not respond to an email query till the time of going to press. Some of the companies facing the trouble and looking for buyers are Texonic Instruments, Protectron Electromech, VXL Systems, Sree Devi Chemicals, Triveni Enterprises, Texmo Precision Castings, UD Foundation, Rangamma Steel and Malleables, and En Renewable Energy.
“Interesting observation during our in depth analysis, was that while the smaller IPP’s wind mills were shut, Wind World India’s own turbines and large IPP’s turbines in the same park were operating at 25-30% PLF,” the banker said. Some of the publicly known large Enercon buyers are IL&FS, CLP and Tata Power. However, they are able to manage servicing. It is the longer tail of the market that actually suffers. All of these assets are located in Karnataka. A lot of assets based in Maharashtra are also under stress due to the Enercon issue. However, since the generation details are not public we would not be able to share the specifics, the banker said.
Enercon GmbH came to India in 1994 in a joint venture with Wind World India, owned by Yogesh and Ajay Mehra of Mumbai. For 12 years their operations ran smoothly. Trouble broke out in 2006 when the Mehra family accused Enercon GmbH of denying it technology and components in an attempt to take over full control of the company. However, Enercon accused the Mehras of stealing technology and siphoning off funds. The legal battle is still on.