Cummins Power Generation Embraces ‘Green’
A Fridley, Minn.-based manufacturer is betting that cleaner-and-greener is the route to global growth and profitability.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported that from Kenya to Wilmington, Del., Cummins Power Generation provides generators that can run on diesel fuel, natural gas and even gas from agricultural waste or sewage treatment plants.
Tony Satterthwaite, a veteran Cummins engineer who is the six-year CEO of Cummins Power Generation, said the latest generation of the company’s diesel generators is so efficient that “what comes out the back end is almost as clean as the air going in the front end.’’
“Since the late 1990s … a core part of the company’s mission is demanding that everything Cummins does leads to a cleaner and safer environment,” Satterthwaite said this month. “That also has proved to be a business advantage.’’
Power Generation, which employs about 2,000 people, has grown faster than the economy over the last decade. And Satterthwaite has forecast the business will grow a respectable 6% to 12% annually through 2018, with profit margins of 11.5% to 14% before interest and taxes. The division last quarter reported declining sales due to lower revenue in India, North America and Asia, for a variety of short-term reasons.
Cummins acquired the former Onan Corp. of Fridley more than 20 years ago. Since 2011, it has expanded Fridley manufacturing, partly by moving office workers to a refurbished office building in Shoreview. In all, Cummins has invested about $150 million in Twin Cities operations over the last few years.
“Fridley remains a great location for us,” Satterthwaite said. “Access to a skilled workforce, a good central U.S. location for faster delivery to our North American distributors, as well as good access to our North American supply base. The Fridley plant primarily serves the North American market. For Cummins Power Generation in total, about (two-thirds) of our sales are outside North America.”
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