The new joint venture, TPI Kompozit Kanat Sanayi ve Ticaret A.S., will commence operations immediately from a 355 000 ft2 building in Izmir, Turkey. The facility is located to serve the Turkish wind market and to cost-effectively export blades to southern and eastern Europe and northern Africa.

TPI Composites, headdquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, will control and operate the Turkish joint venture.

TPI Kompozit will provide blades to key customers based on multi-year commitments. The joint venture will initially employ 350 people with the opportunity to triple the number of employees as the wind energy market in Turkey and eastern Europe expands.

"With its strong industrial and manufacturing base, Turkey will serve as an excellent hub for our eastern European operations," says Steve Lockard, CEO of TPI Composites. "As the first merchant wind blade supplier in Turkey, we intend to partner with leading customers in the region to provide advanced, high-quality, cost-effective wind blades."

"Prior to this JV, the factory we occupied was one of the largest producers of steel containers in Europe," adds Serdar Kemaloglu, a board member and CEO of ALKE. "Now, it will serve as a hub for composite blade manufacturing. With the growing demand for wind energy in Turkey, this venture will add value to the community and create many jobs."

Wind energy in Turkey

Turkey's energy consumption is rising by an average of 8-9% per year, reports TPI. The country is turning to renewable energy sources as a means to improve its energy security and curb dependence on imported gas. The country's new feed-in-tariff, including incentives for local content, combined with attractive merchant market electricity prices are supporting a high growth wind energy market.

Energy experts believe Turkey's wind market may add 500-1000 MW per year reaching more than 5 GW by 2015. It is estimated Turkey will install up to 20 GW by 2023, helping the country to source 30% of its electricity generation from renewable forms of energy by that time.