Business Round-Up: Vejle displaces Esbjerg as Denmark's fifth biggest city - The Post

Business Round-Up: Vejle displaces Esbjerg as Denmark’s fifth biggest city

Elsewhere, workers are losing their jobs at Vestas, the Salling Group and Siemens Gamesa

Vejle’s bridge-making skills have seen it grown to become the country’s fifth biggest city (photo: Nils Jepsen/user:Nico-dk)
September 27th, 2019 1:58 pm| by Ben Hamilton

In business circles, most companies are acutely aware of what the five biggest cities in Denmark are.

For what seems like an eternity, they have been Copenhagen (population 626,508, according to Danmarks Statistik), Aarhus (345,635), Aalborg (215,510), Odense (204,120) and Esbjerg (115,483).

But now there is an interloper in the mix – take note, captains of industry.

With a population of 115,607, the southeast Jutland city of Vejle has assumed fifth place.

Mayor face off
Vejle mayor Jens Ejner Christensen has arranged to meet his Esbjerg counterpart, Jesper Frost Rasmussen, to commiserate.

“It’s no big deal – it’s not going to mean much,” he told TV2.

“But when people started talking about it, I immediately called Jesper Frost and asked if he had heard what had happened. And he immediately knew what I was talking about.”

Completing the top ten are the Copenhagen enclave of Frederiksberg (103,725), Randers (98,009), Viborg (97,245) and Silkeborg (93,636).

Seven of the top ten are in Jutland.

Wind turbine maker lays off 600 workers in Denmark
Wind turbine maker Siemens Gamesa has laid off 600 employees in Denmark. Andreas Nauen, an executive at the Spanish-based company, explained that the redundancies were necessary in light of the “necessity to manage an increasingly competitive market in a responsible manner”.

Vestas lays off nearly 600 workers as it regroups to build bigger blades
Vestas has laid off 500 workers in Germany, along with 90 at its factory in the south Zealand town of Lem near Ringkjøbing. The German workers are based in Lauchhammer, which is just south of Berlin, and the lay-offs accounted for half the factory’s workforce. The Lem redundancies, in contrast, only comprised 12 percent of the employees. Both factories focused on building small blades, but with demand increasing for much bigger blades, Vestas intends to open larger production facilities elsewhere in Europe. Vestas has 24,500 employees worldwide.

PostNord to benefit from new global postal deal as China loses its perks
Benny Engelbrecht, the transport minister, has hailed a new global postage deal agreed by all member states of the United Nations Universal Postal Union, which will ensure that foreign e-commerce companies – particularly those in China – will from 2020 have to pay a more comparable rate for freight to their Danish competitors. The increased rates will be phased in over five years. Chinese companies, for example, last year sent around 16 million shipments to customers in Denmark, leaving local distributor PostNord struggling to cover its costs because of a decades-old agreement designed to benefit developing countries such as China. “PostNord Denmark can look forward to a significant improvement in payment for receiving and distributing shipments from other countries,” enthused Engelbrecht.

READ MORE: Denmark looking to end discount postal deal with China

Google investing in five solar parks with data centre in mind
Google is investing in solar parks in five Danish cities: Morsø in north Jutland, the Randers district of Gimming in east Jutland, Norddjurs in central Jutland, Rødby Fjord on Lolland, and Næstved in south Zealand. The investment is one of a number of renewable energy initiatives announced by the tech giant in Denmark, where it is currently building a huge data centre in Fredericia in southeast Jutland. The first three parks will be operational by next summer, and the final two ready in the autumn. “A company like Google uses a lot of energy because we help keep the internet running 24 hours a day,” noted the company. “But at the same time, we feel a huge responsibility for this happening in the most sustainable way possible.”

Hearing aid giant hit by hackers at a cost of half a billion kroner
Hearing aid company Demant has confirmed it was hit by hackers on September 3 at a cost of 550 million kroner in lost sales. The attack targeted the company’s servers and systems, severely disrupting the production, distribution and sales of its Oticon hearing aids – particularly in key countries such as Australia, the UK, Canada and its biggest market, the US. Demant, which has 14,000 employees worldwide, declared a turnover of 14 billion kroner for 2018.

Supermarket owner having a reshuffle
The country’s second biggest supermarket owner, Salling Group, is laying off 200 workers – mostly in administration as the company reshuffles various departments. However, some of the workers will be re-employed in newly-defined roles. The Salling Group owns the Føtex, Netto and Bilka chains. Salling Group has 35,000 employees in Denmark, along with an additional 13,000 in Poland and Germany. In the supermarket sector, it has a 34.9 percent market share.