Finnish utility forms JV for Norwegian wind expansion

Finnish utility Fortum and Norwegian developer Nordkraft Vind have formed a new joint venture to tap wind opportunities in Norway.

The partnership will operate under the banner Fortum Nordkraft Vind and will further Fortum’s renewables ambitions, which entail expanding its solar and wind portfolio to a multi-gigawatt scale.

“Fortum’s goal is to grow substantially in Nordic wind and Norway has an important role in this strategy,” said Joonas Rauramo, vice president in Fortum’s wind business.

The publicly-listed company is majority owned by the Finnish state and is the third largest power producer in the Nordics. It has over 150 power plants in total across hydro, combined heat and power, condensing and nuclear.

Historically focused on its core sectors hydro and nuclear, in which it has a sizeable portfolio across the Nordic region, Fortum has moved to expand its wind and solar portfolio in the last few years.

Fortum made its first foray into Norwegian wind power in 2017 when it purchased three facilities from Nordkraft: the Nygårdsfjellet in Narvik (32MW), Ånstadblåheia in Sortland (50MW) and Sørfjord in Tysfjord (97MW) which is currently under construction.

Early this year, the company was awarded 90MW in Finland’s first technology neutral renewables tenders for the Kalax wind farm.

It also has a 50% stake in the Ulyanovsk 2 wind farm in Russia alongside state-backed joint stock company Rusnano, and in Sweden it has a 15% stake in the 248MW Blaiken wind farm with Skelleftea Kraft, with whom it also in a 50:50 JV for the 75MW Solber wind farm.

According to a statement, the company intends to develop, construct and manage its renewable assets, and will utilise partnerships to maintain an asset light structure.

Fortum is not the only utility to make a play for Norwegian wind. In March this year Swiss utility EWZ made inroads in the market, purchasing the 100MW Måkaknuten facility from local developer Norsk Vind Energi.


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