This was a long way. And yet, it’s just a start. We had the ambition to bring wind power to Russia. And to do it big time. We combined Dutch no-nonsense approach and ingenuity with Russian scale and wit. And we made Red Wind. We could have registered it just for the sake of the name. It is a cool name. I wanted a name that would shout it’s Russian origins. And my Dutch friends had a lot of fun thinking how we can play it out in public. Yes we had a lot of fun in the process of negotiating the deal and setting up the company. Our interpreter told us that we were his only client for whom he had a special folder “jokes and anecdotes”.
Yesterday I’ve received an award from Russian Ambassador to the Netherlands for development of cooperation between Russia an The Netherlands in the field of renewable energy. I share this award with all the people who helped to make it happen. Thank you to guys and girls at Clifford Chance, Ost-Legal, and DLA Pipers, our legal consultants – you’ve done a lot of work. Thanks to Lagerwey team and management for keeping up with the sometimes strange Russians and never lost faith. The Roland Berger team, who straightened out our thinking on the project and gave us insight and the tools we needed to run this business. Thanks to the team from IB translations – they are the only ones who truly know everything about the deal. Thanks to my dear friend Sjoerd Sieburgh, first an adversary in negotiations and then my partner in management of Red Wind. And finally, to my family for putting up with my frequent travels and my obsession with the project.
Now its time to move. Red Wind has gained power and momentum with Enercon, a German wind turbine manufacturer. It will build 400 wind turbines in Russia in the next six years. Two years ago I shook up the market by leading VetroOGK to auction and securing its first win. Since then two more auctions were held. Last week auction for renewable energy brought about a 50% fall in prices, making wind energy competitive with gas and coal power in Russia. This auction will make wind power inevitable for Russia for many years to come. So my job is done. Wind energy is here to stay with us. And I’ll take a long break.