Great growth prospects
Repeat orders from large customers during 2018 show that VEO AB is on the right track. The future potential is massive; investment in the Swedish power distribution market remains high for the coming years and VEO have the needed solutions. The only potential stumbling block for VEO AB’s expansion plans will be a shortage of skilled project personnel.
VEO has already been part of the Swedish regional and distribution grid upgrade process for more than a decade. The power distribution companies are modernising their networks and need capable suppliers.
“During 2018, we continued to receive repeat orders from our main customers on the Swedish market. This is a clear indication that we are doing a good job”, says Fredrik Grankull, Vice President, Power Distribution. “And our market share is growing. Just a few years ago we had only one or two Swedish projects per year, now we have had more than 10 projects running simultaneously.”
So why is Vaasa-based VEO such an attractive supplier to the Swedish market? “Power distribution affects all society; therefore, power cuts must be kept as few and as short as possible. VEO’s modular substation solutions fit this equation perfectly”, explains Grankull. “The modular solution allows us to assemble and test the system in controlled conditions at the factory at the same time as the foundations are being built on site. This leads to shorter execution times, safer deliveries and a higher quality. And these are factors that the three power distribution giants in Sweden recognise.”
An important piece of the puzzle
The Swedish market is a very important part of VEO’s growth strategy. Grankull sees good opportunities in doubling the turnover within the next few years, considering the fact that the pace of investment in the power distribution business will remain high until at least 2025.
Nuclear power is being phased out in Sweden, resulting in even more focus on renewable energies. In the short to medium term, nuclear power will mostly be replaced by wind power, which means that the need for grid-connected substations is substantial.
To take full advantage of the opportunities available, VEO AB is now in the process of recruiting more employees, although this appears to be easier said than done. “Customers and investors know us, but among potential employees we are still fairly unknown. We need to build our brand awareness; we should aim at being perceived as a Swedish company – with a Finnish twist. Employee wellbeing is important for us and VEO offers its employees great working conditions. Now it’s time to let the Swedish workforce know about it”, concludes Grankull.
The Swedish market is a very important part of VEO’s growth strategy. Grankull sees good opportunities in doubling the turnover within the next few years.
Projects in the spotlight
Most VEO projects on the Swedish market are either modernisations of old substations or the planning and constructing of new ones. VEO also delivers substations for integrating renewable energy, mostly wind power, to the grid.
VEO completed the first substation delivery to Ellevio in 2015. Since then, VEO and Ellevio have worked together on several projects. The latest project to be completed was the delivery of a substation connecting the newly-built wind farm in Ljusdal to the grid. The wind farm with 18 turbines has a capacity of 65 MW and an estimated annual production of 244 GWh. The substation was based on VEO’s modular substation building solution and tailored according to Ellevio’s needs. The substation houses a 36kV switchgear platform as well as control and protection equipment.
During 2018, one of the largest hydropower projects VEO worked on in Sweden was for key customer Vattenfall Eldistribution. VEO’s scope included the rebuild of four 40/10 kV substations around the cities of Umeå and Örnsköldsvik in the north of Sweden. The project was a turnkey delivery, which included medium-voltage switchgear and control equipment, as well as the demolition of the old stations.