Wärtsilä is building the Smart Technology Hub, a new centre of research, product development and production, in Vaskiluoto, Vaasa.
As part of the project, Wärtsilä will invest EUR 83 million (USD 95 million) in modern testing and production technology for the hub. The total investment in the Smart Technology Hub will be in the region of EUR 200 million (USD 228 million), consisting of office and factory buildings, logistics and infrastructure.
“Constant renewal is in Wärtsilä’s DNA,” says Wärtsilä’s President & CEO, Jaakko Eskola. “This company was established in 1834 as a sawmill in the village of Värtsilä in Tohmajärvi, and now it is the global leader in smart technology and complete lifecycle solutions for the marine and energy markets. The Vaasa Smart Technology Hub represents another generational shift for us – it will bring Wärtsilä’s expertise into a whole new realm.”
The Smart Technology Hub is the latest tangible step in Wärtsilä’s Smart Marine and Smart Energy visions. The hub will be unique in its field, enabling more agile, more efficient testing and product development of solutions for the maritime, oil and gas industries, as well as new energy systems.
“The Smart Technology Hub will become an important part of Wärtsilä’s worldwide network of centres of expertise,” says Hannu Mäntymaa, director, R&D and Engineering at Wärtsilä. “By sharing what we have learned in our various units, we will be able to provide our customers with even better products and services. We will develop processes at the Vaasa Smart Technology Hub, which we will be able to deploy in other locations.”
The Smart Technology Hub will invite other operators in the sectors and researchers to collaborate. The vision is to create a partners’ campus where research and product development take place together with Wärtsilä’s customers and suppliers, start-ups in the sector and universities.
Planning of the Smart Technology Hub is well underway, and the new centre will open its doors in Vaskiluoto in 2020. The Vaasa region is already the leading energy technology cluster in the Nordic region, and the developing area of Vaskiluoto will further reinforce the region’s significance and potential as a global trendsetter.
By 2020, all of Wärtsilä’s functions and personnel in central Vaasa will transfer to the new hub, along with the logistics and maintenance workshop operations from Runsor.