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New power behind Esbjerg’s energy initiative

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Lone Aaboe Jessen, Esbjerg Business Development Centre’s new Marketing Manager

Esbjerg Business Development Centre is continuing its ambitious growth strategy for the Municipality of Esbjerg, Denmark, as a focal point for the energy sector, through the appointment of Lone Aaboe Jessen as its new Marketing Manager.

Ms Jessen has considerable international and regional business experience, and offers particular insight in the offshore sector, one of Esbjerg’s key growth areas. She joins EBDC with a track record that includes the Marketing Manager role at marine and offshore equipment specialist Viking Life Saving Equipment, one of the region’s foremost employers. She can also call on seven years overseas experience as part of the Royal Danish Consulate General in Los Angeles.

EBDC’s growth strategy encourages and supports innovation across the business, tourism, public sector and education communities. Representing more than 800 companies in and around Denmark’s fifth largest city, it has challenging targets for tangible growth by 2015.

“Esbjerg is Denmark’s energy hub, through its port location but also in terms of industry, and research and development, ” says Ms Jessen. “It is also a region that is rich in cultural, historical and scenic attractions, making it appealing for relocation.”

Esbjerg’s role in energy technology takes in offshore oil and gas, offshore wind and energy-efficient combustion technology. Accounting for more than two-thirds of the country’s jobs in the offshore industry, the Municipality’s business cluster gives employ to around 10, 000 people, either directly or in associated activities.

As the first country to discover oil in the North Sea, today Denmark is the only oil-exporting country in the EU, with new discoveries continuing to be made.  Meanwhile, with Denmark’s first offshore wind farm dating back to 1991, the renewables sector has become a vibrant regional industry that includes operators, equipment suppliers, sub-suppliers, service companies and research institutions. Some 80% of all offshore wind turbines for the European market are loaded at the port of Esbjerg.

“Our ‘EnergyMetropolis’ concept sums up the attractions of Esbjerg as a city location for energy businesses that also take in the bio and wave sectors, ” Ms Jessen says. “Career opportunities here in Esbjerg are immense for the best engineers, project managers and directors, and other specialists focused on these challenging area, but we are also fortunate to be at the heart of Denmark’s historical traditions while at the same time offering the modern amenities of a fast-growing and cosmopolitan city.”

In October, the EU pledged € 1.9 million to ECOWindS under the Cluster Management Excellence Gold Level awards. The project aims at cutting wind farm maintenance costs   in the UK, Germany, Denmark and Norway. It has been developed in collaboration with the Technical University of Denmark and Aalborg University, and Offshore Centre Denmark has also collaborated closely with the South Denmark European Office with a view to developing Esbjerg and the rest of Denmark as a centre for the offshore sector.

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