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Prysmian is expanding its facilities at its production site for submarine cables in Kirkkonummi, Finland.

A press release said that YIT, a Finnish construction and development company, will expand four hall buildings and build a new material warehouse in the area, covering an area of 26,000 sq m. The project, estimated to cost approximately €35 million, is scheduled for completion in June 2026.

YIT was previously used for the implementation phase partner for the cable tower project last summer. The tower, which reached its ridge height of 185 meters at the end of last year, is set to be completed in the summer of 2025. “We are pleased to continue our cooperation with YIT in the expansion of Prysmian’s submarine cable center of excellence and factory production capacity in Pikkala,” said Ferdinando Quartuccio, country CEO of Prysmian Group Finland. “The contract now signed is a natural continuation of the ongoing cable tower construction project, which has progressed according to plan and on schedule.”

News of Prysmian’s April 15 agreement to acquire Encore Wire for approximately $3.9 billion—the largest-ever such wire and cable industry deal—quickly circulated on the opening day of wire Düsseldorf in Germany, where some attendees were utterly stunned by the unexpected report.

A press release said that the addition of Encore Wire’s huge vertically integrated, single-site campus in McKinney, Texas, that produces a broad range of copper and aluminum electrical wire and cables, is highly complementary to Prysmian’s strategy. It “will allow Prysmian to increase its exposure to secular growth drivers, enhance its exposure to North America, leverage Encore Wire’s operational efficiency and best in class service across Prysmian’s portfolio, broaden Prysmian’s product offering enabling the combined company to better address customers’ needs in North America and generate ~€140m in run-rate EBITDA synergies expected within four years from closing.”

Massimo Battaini, Prysmian designated Group CEO, described the deal as a landmark moment. “Through this acquisition, Prysmian will grow its North American presence, enhancing its portfolio and geographic mix, while significantly increasing the exposure to secular growth drivers. We look forward to welcoming the Encore Wire team to Prysmian and benefitting from the combined company’s enhanced product offerings and customer relationships.”

“We are pleased to have reached an agreement that reflects the remarkable value Encore Wire has created with our expansive single-campus model, low-cost production, centralized distribution and product innovation,” said Daniel L. Jones, Encore Wire’s chairman, president and CEO. “Encore Wire and Prysmian are two highly complementary organizations, and we anticipate a bright future for Encore Wire as part of Prysmian. ... As part of a larger, global operation, we expect this transaction will bring additional future opportunities for our employees, whose dedication and hard work made this transaction possible. We look forward to working with Prysmian to complete this value-enhancing combination and realize the significant benefits that we expect it will bring to all of our stakeholders.”

The transaction, which was unanimously approved by each company’s Board of Directors and recommended to its shareholders by Encore Wire’s Board of Directors, is expected to close in the second half of 2024. The sale is subject to the approval of Encore Wire’s shareholders, regulatory approvals and other customary conditions.

At wire Düsseldorf, some attendees questioned the fit between the two entities, each of which is very successful, yet having different business approaches. Of note, Prysmian—founded in 2005 through the acquisition of the energy and telecom cables and system activities of Pirelli—does have a track record of making periodic major acquisitions. That includes the 2011 purchase of Draka Holding for €840 million and the 2017 purchase of General Cable for approximately $3 billion.

Prysmian has been selected to receive $4.5 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Energy Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) for a project that will see the company develop specialized equipment.

A press release said that the funding is part of the Grid Overhaul with Proactive, High-speed Undergrounding for Reliability, Resilience, and Security (GOPHURRS) program, which aims to strengthen and modernize America’s aging power grid through the development of cost-effective, high-speed, and safe undergrounding technologies. “We know that by undergrounding our grid, we can create a more resilient and reliable U.S. power grid,” said Dr. Evelyn N. Wang, ARPA-E director.

Prysmian intends to develop a hands-free power cable splicing machine operating in underground vaults. The goal is to reduce the share of splicing-caused medium-voltage network failures from 60-80% to less than 5% and dramatically improve workforce safety by reducing the time the underground cable splicing crews spend in such vaults.

“This machine is envisioned to splice cable automatically using advanced technologies, which help humans to operate the machine remotely from a safer environment,” the release said. “If successful, performing cable splicing using this machine will increase the reliability of the network and reduce energy losses due to splice failures.”

“Our ground-breaking splicing machine represents a major step ahead in the cable undergrounding process, reinforcing our unwavering commitment to grid hardening, modernization, safety and reliability,” said Andrea Pirondini, CEO of Prysmian North America. “In addressing the aging U.S. power grid, Prysmian is prepared to offer solutions that propel us into the 21st century and beyond.”

Prysmian will collaborate with Con Edison and Exelon, two of the largest U.S. investor-owned utilities. “Prysmian remains steadfast in our commitment to investing in innovations that advance our industry. Equally, we value collaborative partnerships that contribute to building a resilient, sustainable grid ready to tackle tomorrow’s challenges,” said Srinivas Siripurapu, Ph.D., chief innovation officer for Prysmian and principal investigator for the project.

Prysmian reports that it has finalized a contract worth approximately €1.9 billion for Eastern Green Link 2 Limited (EGL2), a project that will deliver power generated in Scotland to England.

A press release said that the EGL2 connection— partners of the project—SSEN Transmission and National Grid Electricity Transmission plc, the U.K. electricity transmission network owners—will form a vital electricity transmission link between Scotland and England. It is one of the first cable systems contracted in the U.K. that will use 525 kV HVDC technology with extruded XLPE insulation. Prysmian will design, manufacture, install, test and commission the required HVDC cable system that will have a power transmission capacity of 2 GW.

“We are very proud to have the opportunity to play our role in the development of such a strategic infrastructure for U.K.,” said Hakan Ozmen, EVP Transmission BU, Prysmian. “Once completed, the electrical ‘superhighway’ cable link will unlock the rich renewable energy capacity of Scotland and significantly increase the UK’s capacity to deliver clean energy for around two million homes in the U.K.”

The award follows the earlier selection of Prysmian last year as the exclusive preferred bidder, with a commitment made to assure its continued capacity availability for the project. The new connection is due to be operational in 2029. See p. 18 for related news item.

The Prysmian Group announced a new organizational structure to allow the group to pursue its mid-term ambitions and to sustain the long-term leadership.

A press release said that four new business segments will be in place: Transmission, led by Hakan Ozmen; Power Grids, led by Cinzia Farisè; Electrification, led by Cristiana Scelza; and Digital Solutions, led by Frederick Persson.

The Group matrix organization will continue to stay in place to guarantee the company’s ability to be very close to the local markets and customers (through regions and countries) while reinforcing the continental and global synergies, acting as a major partner through the business segments. A strong focus on the “one company governance” will be assured by the Group functions.

Regional leadership changes were also reported. Sezgin Islamoglu will be CEO of Central East Europe; Erkan Aydogdu will lead the Middle East, Turkey, India, Africa and Russia as well as serve as CEO of Oman Cables Industries (OCI) Group; Hamavand Shroff will be appointed CEO of Oceania and South East Asia; Raul Gil will take over the responsibility for Latin America. Also, Maria Cristina Bifulco will be promoted to Chief Investor Relations, Sustainability and Communication Officer.

“Good, authentic and passionate people make the difference and build companies solid and successful” said designated CEO Massimo Battaini. “We can count on a very strong pipeline of talents which will make our growth very sustainable and our company even a more sound and strong community.”

Prysmian reports that it has been awarded a contract worth over €100 million by Petrobras to provide 170 km of deep-water electro-hydraulic umbilicals and related specialized offshore and logistic services.

A press release said that the deal calls for deep-water steel tube and thermoplastic umbilicals. They will be engineered, produced, tested and delivered from 2024-2027 by Prysmian’s offshore specialties site in Vila Velha, Brazil.

“This award confirms the mutual trust and long-standing relationship between Petrobras and Prysmian Group, as it is the latest of several projects developed for the Brazilian energy company,” said Detlev Waimann, CCO Projects Business Unit, Prysmian Group.

The release said that the dedicated Offshore Specialties unit can deliver solutions for the most challenging subsea projects. In recent years, the Group has invested in further expanding its industrial assets in the Vila Velha plant and its logistic delivery options, as well its entire end-to-end value generation process, from the R&D modelling up to offshore services, to better meet customer needs offering technologically advanced cable solutions.

Per a company data sheet, the umbilicals are high pressure hydraulic control hoses made of a nylon extruded liner, reinforced with a polyaramid braid and sheathed with an extruded polyurethane layer. Electrical control cables are insulated and jacketed with SEVEREX high performance compounds. The electrical cable design and performance can meet the most demanding and specific system requirements. The umbilical components are assembled and sheathed with a polymeric extruded layer and then armored with a counter-helix double-layer flat steel wire armor, to virtually eliminate any torsional tendency due to installation/operation stresses and improve the umbilical hydrodynamic stability.

Prysmian wins contracts for 50Hertz project
Prysmian PowerLink Srl, part of the Prysmian Group, has been awarded new HVDC cable contracts worth some €1.1 billion by 50Hertz, a transmission grid operator in Germany.
A press release said that order is part of 50Hertz’s long-term EPCI (Engineering, Procurement, Construction and Installation) contracts for German projects. This one is for Lot2, which includes EPCI contracts for the NOR-11-1 submarine and DC31 land projects, along with Lot7. The projects are part of Germany’s overall goal to reach a cumulative installed capacity of 70 GW by 2045 for offshore wind and to transfer the energy generated in the North Sea to consumers in the eastern and southern regions of Germany.
Under Lot2, Prysmian will be responsible for the EPCI elements as well as testing and commissioning the two turnkey projects—NOR-11-1 and DC31—that will have an overall cable length of around 1,000 km. With a power transmission capacity of 2 GW, NOR-11-1 is a 525 kV HVDC submarine project utilizing submarine cable plus underground cable along the route that is planned to connect the offshore windfarm area N-11-1 to the German grid in the Heide/West area. The second project of Lot2, the DC31 is a 525 kV HVDC underground cable project and is planned to transmit power from the Heide/West area to Klein Rogahn.
Both the submarine and land HVDC cable systems will consist of two single-core copper cables with XLPE insulation plus a dedicated XLPE metallic return (DMR) cable and a fiber optic cable. The submarine power cables will be produced at Prysmian’s plants in Pikkala, Finland, and Arco Felice, Italy, and the submarine fiber cables will be manufactured in Nordenham, Germany. The underground power cables to be used will cover both the DC31 and the underground part of the NOR-11-1 project will be produced in France.
Prysmian was also deemed a primary supplier for Lot7, which consists of a framework provision allowing 50Hertz to contract future 525 kV offshore and/or onshore projects with a cable core length volume of up to 2,700 km within an agreed period, and burial of offshore cables.
“We are happy to collaborate and strengthen our partnership with 50Hertz on these important projects and contribute to the German ‘Energiewende’ with our solutions and experience, supporting the growth of green energy use in Germany and around the world,” said Hakan Ozmen, EVP Projects BU, Prysmian Group.

The Prysmian Group announced that it has agreed to reserve capacity to supply the cable to the Marinus Link Pty Ltd., a subsidiary of the Australian TSO TasNetworks, for a new power interconnector between Tasmania and Victoria, Australia.

A press release said that the contract for the project, valued at approximately €90 million, will be negotiated and is expected to be finalized within 2024. Prysmian Group has reserved the capacity to design, test, supply and install a HVDC Cable System, consisting of 320 kV single-core cables with XLPE insulation and single-wire armoring, covering both submarine and land sections.

The submarine connection will be approximately 255 km long, from Northwest Tasmania to Waratah Bay, Victoria, while the underground cable will run for approximately 90 km reaching the Latrobe Valley, Victoria. The link will include a submarine fiber optic cable of 255 km.

The submarine cable would be made at the Prysmian Group’s plant in Arco Felice, Italy, while the land cables has been reserved at its plant in either Delft, The Netherlands, or Gron, France. The laying would be done by the Prysmian Group’s Leonardo da Vinci.

Under the Marinus Link project, Prysmian Group is expected to also provide a fully integrated PRY-CAM permanent monitoring system. All cables will be constantly monitored using the PRY-CAM innovative solutions like Distributed Temperature (DTS) and Acoustic Sensing (DAS) to measure all key operating parameters of the whole cable system.

“This capacity reservation agreement has a strategic importance for Prysmian as it underlines our global leadership and strengthens our regional presence in Oceania as a major supplier of an extensive range of high-tech products to power utilities,” said Detlev Waimann, Chief Commercial Officer Projects BU, Prysmian Group.

Of note, the project originally called for two power cables. In 2017, the Marinus Link was designed to include two 750-megawatt cables at a total cost of about $3 billion. Fast forward through a period of global inflation, Covid and raw material cost increases and the projected cost was $5.4 billion. The cost for the project with a single cable was estimated at $1.9 to $2 billion. The single cable, it was said, would achieve about two-thirds of the project value.

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