• Apr 14, 2009
Just two days ago, the State of Michigan announced it was extending its previously announced tax breaks and incentives to lure high-tech battery makers to the state to $555 million. It seems that the bait has been snatched up today as four separate battery companies have just announced plans to build new plants in Michigan. Each of the four companies are expected to be granted $100 million in state tax credits.

When finished, these plants will account for around 6,600 jobs and the companies behind them will spend an estimated $1.7 billion to build them. Here are the four companies, you'll likely be familiar with at least three of them:
Apparently, there were other applications from hopeful battery makers that were not accepted. A number of other Michigan-based projects were also announced, click past the break for more.

[Source: Michigan Economic Development Corporation]

PRESS RELEASE:

Governor Granholm Announces Companies Investing Over $2 Billion, Creating More Than 7,700 New Jobs in Michigan

Projects include investments in advanced battery, film industry, IT software, auto R&D, agriculture

LANSING - Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced that Michigan's aggressive strategy to diversify the economy and grow entire new industries has resulted in 14 job-creating projects, generating more than 7,700 new jobs and over $2 billion in new investment in communities across the state.

The projects include: four advanced-battery manufacturing projects; six company expansions in diverse industries like agriculture, automotive research and development and IT business software; a new film production studio; and three brownfield redevelopments that will transform blighted and abandoned sites into new centers of economic growth and activity.

"The depth and scope of these projects demonstrate that Michigan has exactly what companies are looking for as they choose where to locate and grow their business - an aggressive economic growth strategy, a competitive business climate, innovative economic development tools and an outstanding workforce," Granholm said. "If companies are looking to invest and create jobs, we want them to know that Michigan is a great state to do business."

Project details include:

- Johnson Controls-Saft Advanced Power Solutions LLC (JCS) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin-based JCS, one of the leading independent suppliers of lithium-ion batteries for hybrid and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, plans to invest $220 million in a new advanced-battery manufacturing facility in Michigan to produce lithium-ion cells for automotive applications. The project is expected to create 498 new jobs. Based on the Michigan Economic Development Corporation's (MEDC) recommendation, the Michigan Economic Growth Authority (MEGA) board today approved a state tax credit valued at $48.5 million over 15 years and a battery cell state tax credit valued at $100 million over four years to help win the project over competing U.S. sites. JCS has partnered with Ford Motor Company on battery-cell manufacturing, pack and system development, and integration capability.
http://www.saftbatteries.com

- LG Chem-Compact Power (LGC-CPI) - Korean-based LG Chem, in partnership with its U.S. subsidiary Compact Power and General Motors, has proposed a plan to manufacture lithium-ion battery cells in Michigan. LCG-CPI plans to invest $200 million in the project, which is expected to create more than 300 new jobs. Based on the MEDC's recommendation, the MEGA board today approved a state tax credit valued at $25.2 million over 15 years and a battery cell state tax credit valued at $100 million over four years to help win the project over competing U.S. sites. http://www.compactpower.com

- KD Advanced Battery Group LLC (KD) - The joint venture of The Dow Chemical Company, Kokam America Inc., and Townsend Ventures LLC, formed to construct and operate a large scale battery and cell manufacturing facility in Michigan, plans to invest $665 million in a new 800,000 square-foot battery manufacturing facility to produce its patented Superior Lithium Polymer Battery technology for the electric and hybrid electric vehicle markets. The project is expected to create 885 new jobs. Based on the MEDC's recommendation, the MEGA board today approved a state tax credit valued at $44.6 million over 15 years and a battery cell tax credit valued at $100 million over four years to help win the project over competing U.S. sites. http://www.dow.com http://www.kokamamerica.com

- A123Systems Inc . - The Watertown, Massachusetts-based designer, developer and manufacturer of rechargeable lithium-ion batteries and battery systems plans to invest over $600 million in initial coating, cell manufacturing, and pack assembly in Michigan. The planned project is expected to create over 5,000 new jobs. Based on the MEDC's recommendation, the MEGA board today approved a high-tech state tax credit valued at $25.2 million over 15 years and a battery cell state tax credit valued at $100 million over four years to help win the project over competing U.S. sites. A123Systems is one of the state's six Centers of Energy Excellence and has entered into a development and manufacturing agreement with Chrysler LLC to provide battery systems for the company's ENVI product line.
http://www.a123systems.com

- Continental Dairy Products Inc . - The cooperative, consisting of 28 dairy farms in the upper Midwest with an average of 3,000 cows producing 1.8 billion pounds of high-quality grade-A milk annually, plans to invest $103.2 million in a new-to-Michigan powdered milk production facility in Coopersville. The project is expected to create156 new jobs, including 70 directly by the company. An economic analysis conducted by the MEDC estimates the project will generate an additional 86 indirect jobs. Based on the MEDC's recommendation, the MEGA board today approved a state tax credit valued at $1.5 million over 10 years to help win the company's investment over competing sites in Indiana and Ohio. The city of Coopersville is considering an abatement to support the project.

- Lenawee Stamping Corporation - The metal stamping and welded fabrication company plans to invest $6.6 million to expand its operations in Tecumseh. The project is expected to create 277 new jobs, including 81 directly by the company. An economic analysis conducted by the MEDC estimates the project will generate an additional 196 indirect jobs. Based on the MEDC's recommendation, the MEGA board today approved a state tax credit valued at $873,012 over seven years to help win the company's investment over competing sites in Canada and Tennessee. The city of Tecumseh is considering a 12-year abatement worth $397,000 to support the project. http://lenaweestamping.com

- Transonic Combustion Inc . - The California-based, automotive cleantech firm plans to invest $247,000 to open a new-to-Michigan sales and technology office in Oakland County. The office will support the development and commercialization of Transonic's breakthrough ultra-high efficiency fuel injection system for modern automotive internal combustion engines. The company is actively engaged with several top global automakers to implement their technology that promises to dramatically increase fuel economy and cut carbon pollution. The project is expected to create 64 new jobs, including 25 directly by the company. An economic analysis conducted by the MEDC estimates the project will generate an additional 39 indirect jobs. Based on the MEDC's recommendation, the MEGA board today approved a state tax credit valued at $648,313 over six years to win the company's investment as the first new expansion site outside its California headquarters. To support the project, Oakland County is providing site selection services and has pledged up to $10,000 in job-training funds. http://www.tscombustion.com

- JBautotech LLC - The Livonia-based designer and manufacturer of specialty machines and equipment plans to invest $970,000 to expand its operations in Livonia to develop advanced technologies that reduce fuel consumption and exhaust emissions. The project is expected to create 56 new jobs, including 29 directly by the company. An economic analysis conducted by the MEDC estimates the project will generate an additional 27 indirect jobs. Based on the MEDC's recommendation, the MEGA board today approved a state tax credit valued at $418,570 over seven years to help the company remain competitive in the bidding process for projects. The city of Livonia is considering a tax abatement to support the project. http://jbautotech.com

- PolyCem LLC - The concrete-based technology company and manufacturer of concrete tile products plans to invest $5.6 million to relocate its manufacturing operations from Mississippi to Norton Shores. The project is expected to create 209 new jobs, including 116 directly by the company. An economic analysis conducted by the MEDC estimates the project will generate an additional 93 indirect jobs. Based on the MEDC's recommendation, the MEGA board today approved a state tax credit valued at $791,333 over seven years to help win the project over a competing site in Wisconsin. The city of Norton Shores has approved a 10-year abatement valued at $9,600 annually to support the project. http://stonecraft-tile.com

- Unity Studios Inc. - The Burbank, California-based venture plans to invest $146 million to locate a new film, television and media production studio in Allen Park. The studio will provide production services, including stage rentals, grip, electric equipment, production vehicles, editorial equipment, camera equipment, post sound facilities, music recording facilities, animation design, and a media school. In addition, Unity Studios will produce and distribute its own product. The project is expected to create 121 new jobs, including 83 directly by the company. An economic analysis conducted by the MEDC estimates the project will generate an additional 38 indirect jobs. Based on the MEDC's recommendation, the MEGA board today approved a state tax credit valued at $2.8 million over 12 years to help win the studio's investment over a competing site in Louisiana. To support the project, the city of Allen Park and Wayne County are working with the MEDC on a potential Renaissance Zone designation. In addition, Infrastructure Development Film and Digital Media Incentives are being considered by the Michigan Film Office, and the MEDC has approved up to $83,000 in economic development job training funding. http://www.cityofallenpark.org/business-application.php

- Urban Science Applications Inc . - The provider of state-of-the-art business analysis serving clients' retail networks, retail outlets, and marketing abilities plans to invest $29.2 million to expand its operations in Detroit. The project is expected to create 146 news jobs, including 69 directly by the company. An economic analysis conducted by the MEDC estimates the expansion will generate 77 indirect jobs. Based on the MEDC's recommendation, the MEGA board today approved a state tax credit valued at $2 million over 10 years to help win the project over competing sites in Alabama, North Carolina, New Jersey, and California. The city of Detroit is considering a tax abatement to support the project. In addition, the MEDC has approved up to $138,000 in economic development job training funds. http://urbanscience.com

- Riverfront Student Housing LLC - A brownfield tax credit valued at $3.7 million will support the conversion of the closed Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Flint into a 550-bed living/learning residence center for U-M Flint, Kettering University, and Mott Community College students. The new development will come equipped with retail, commercial, convention, and public space. The project is expected to generate $30 million in private investment and up to 50 new jobs.

- Meridian Building Company - A brownfield tax credit valued at $4.6 million will support the transformation of a parking lot at 20 East Fulton in Grand Rapids into a 10-story, mixed-use retail and residential development with 105 market-rate apartments and parking deck for residents, employees, and customers. The project is expected to generate more than $26 million in new investment and create 15 new jobs.

- Lake Park Place, 508 Pleasant Street LLC - A brownfield tax credit valued at $2.1 million and state and local tax capture worth $298,500 will support the demolition of a functionally obsolete building in downtown St. Joseph and replace it with a seven-story, mixed-use retail and residential development with 30-35 condos on the upper six floors. The project is expected to generate $21 million in new investment and up to 30 new jobs.

"All of these projects are the result of a proactive economic development strategy," MEDC President and CEO Greg Main said. "We have identified key growth sectors, and we are aggressively targeting those projects that will help us diversify Michigan's economy."

In her 2009 State of the State address, Granholm emphasized the importance of creating jobs, diversifying Michigan's economy, and providing education and training to workers. Since January 2005, the governor and the MEDC have announced the creation or retention of more than 320,000 jobs as a result of targeted assistance provided by the MEDC.

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, a partnership between the state and local communities, promotes smart economic growth by developing strategies and providing services to create and retain good jobs and a high quality of life. For more information on the MEDC's initiatives and programs, visit the Web site at www.TheMEDC.org.

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