Finland

Paving the way ahead

For VEO, the year 2018 was determined by two main themes in Finland: breaking into new markets and creating continuity with existing customers. Through these themes, VEO laid a solid foundation, upon which the way towards the company’s future growth targets will be paved.

Although VEO’s goal is to always take special care of existing clients, it is also important to find customers in new business areas if the company is to grow. One of the biggest successes with existing customers in 2018 was VEO’s hydropower business.

“In the first half of the year, we had few orders in hydropower due to highly competitive market. The situation demanded a review of our sales process and working practices, which was worth the effort, because by the end of the year the hydropower business made a U-turn in terms of order intake,” explains Jari Vataja, Vice President of Power Generations.

In addition to success in the hydropower business, VEO also improved its position in the mining industry, where deals on project cooperation were signed with two new customers.

“Although the development work carried out during the year might not give results in the short term, VEO’s long-term future now looks bright for both hydropower and mining in Finland,” Vataja says happily.

 

With the growth targets set for 2023 in mind, VEO has concentrated on signing deals for larger and longer projects in all areas of operation. There are many examples of this successful work. The Expert Services unit has now focused more on selling comprehensive lifecycle service solutions, and the Cyber Security service has been developed to better attend service-contract customers. The electrification of the Meyer Werft vessels, which were added as an option in an agreement signed between VEO and the shipping company in 2016, are now under construction. In addition, in 2018 VEO continued to maintain its already well-established position as one of the main substation suppliers to the major power distribution operators in Finland.

“The competition is extremely tough, and the fact that customers such as the electricity distribution and heating company Elenia, national transmission system operator Fingrid and other noted actors keep choosing VEO shows that we are seen as a reliable and qualitative supplier.”

 

In Finland, a notable and particularly successful change in strategy in 2018 concerned VEO’s Industry unit. Their strategy was modified so that the focus in future will be on selling larger service packages to complement switchgear sales. Last year, for example, VEO’s more comprehensive service packages included the decommissioning of old equipment and the installation of new solutions for the metal, pulp & paper and chemical industries in Finland.

“We adopted the same strategy in sectional drive projects, and with hindsight we can say that decision met our customers’ expectations. As a result of this change, we have been able to give our customers even more added value while strengthening the competitiveness of the industry sector. Also, the profile of VEO’s sectional drive business has clearly strengthened, and the number of projects has increased from earlier,” Vataja notes.

 

Today, Finland is standing at the verge of a new power generation era. The ramping-down of dependence on fossil fuels is driving the renewable energy source business, which opens up huge opportunities for VEO.

“For example, in wind power, investment levels during the next two to five years are looking very promising. Even though Finland has seen the end of heavily subsidised wind power, recent developments in turbine technology now make it possible to produce wind power profitably also without subsidies. That is why we have lately concentrated our efforts on substations, as they will be increasingly needed to connect the future wind farms to the grids of tomorrow. We are constantly looking for more new niche areas as all these examples show. 2018 was the year to lay the foundations, upon which we will now pave our way towards an even greater VEO,” Vataja concludes.

With the growth targets set for 2023 in mind, VEO has concentrated on signing deals for larger and longer projects in all areas of operation.

MISSION STATEMENT

In 2018, our turnover rose to an impressive €103 million, and the number of orders increased more than ever before.

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