Michigan’s sagging manufacturing base is getting a boost from makers of lithium-ion batteries, with a substantial nudge from government incentives. The auto industry will be a big beneficiary from the deals.
On April 14, four companies said they will invest nearly $1.7 billion in Michigan manufacturing plants, with the assistance of nearly $550 million in tax breaks, according to CleanTech Brief.
The companies include:
- A123Systems Inc. is investing $600 million in initial coating, cell manufacturing and pack assembly. Its factory will be in Livonia. The Michigan Economic Growth Authority (MEGA) is kicking in $125.2 million in tax credits.
- The Dow Chemical Co., Kokam America Inc. and Townsend Ventures LLC. are spending $665 million toward a battery and cell manufacturing plant to produce lithium polymer batteries. The batteries are intended for electric and hybrid vehicles. MEGA will devote $144.6 million in tax credits.
- Johnson Controls-Saft Advanced Power Solutions LLC. is investing $220 million for a facility to make lithium-ion cells for cars, to which MEGA is adding $148.5 million in tax credits.
- LG Chem, a Korean company, in partnership with its Troy, Mich.-based subsidiary Compact Power Inc., and General Motors Corp., are putting forth $200 million to produce lithium-ion battery cells. If Michigan introduces and passes legislation to provide more tax credits, the state will kick in $125.2 million in tax credits for the project.
In all, the battery plants should add 6,600 jobs.
Auto makers are keen to get the plants up and running.
General Motors has placed great emphasis on future prospects of its Volt electric car, for which production is running late.