Former MHI Vestas Offshore Wind CEO Takes Helm at Aker Offshore Wind


Philippe Kavafyan, the former CEO of offshore wind turbine manufacturer MHI Vestas Offshore Wind, has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of the recently established Norwegian offshore wind developer Aker Offshore Wind.

Aker Offshore Wind said Kavafyan would deploy his vast experience from the wind industry to accelerate the deepwater wind developer’s growth ambitions across projects in Asia, Europe and North America.

"Philippe Kavafyan’s broad experience as an executive in the offshore wind industry makes him the ideal candidate to take Aker Offshore Wind through the next stages of development,” says Kristian Røkke, Chairman of Aker Offshore Wind and CEO of the company’s main owner Aker Horizons.

Kavafyan said: "I am excited to take on this role at Aker Offshore Wind, which is in a great position to lead the industrialization of floating wind on a big scale, utilizing its unique industrial heritage from the Aker group and strong, early positions in major offshore projects around the world,” says

Kavafyan replaces Astrid Skarheim Onsum, who has decided to pursue interests outside the company.

“I would like to thank Astrid Skarheim Onsum for her leadership and commitment during the initial phase of Aker Offshore Wind as a stand-alone company. Under her stewardship, a small project group grew into a respected and recognized player in the rapidly growing floating wind industry,” says Røkke. The change will be effective from November 1, 2021.

Kavafyan, who was recently also appointed as board member in Danish offshore vessel owner Maersk Supply Service, has 15 years’ experience in onshore and offshore wind energy, combined with previous experience in Power Generation within Electricité de France, General Electric, and Areva. Kavafyan is a graduate from Ecole Polytechnique and holds a Master’s Degree in Robotics and Industrial Management from Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines in Paris, France.

Aker Offshore Wind, created last year as an Aker Solutions spinoff, describes itself as a pioneer in industrializing the floating wind market, "which is expected to emerge as one of the most efficient renewable energy sources."

Today, around 80% of the world’s offshore wind resources are in waters deeper than 60 meters, unsuitable for bottom-fixed foundations. According to Aker Offshore Wind, the company is currently working to develop offshore wind projects in the US, South Korea, UK, Norway, and Sweden.

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