BF Staff Archives

Saft America to Build Lithium-Ion Battery Plant in Florida

Saft America to Build Lithium-Ion Battery Plant in Florida

Saft America, Inc., a world leader in the design and manufacture of high-technology batteries, was awarded a $95.5-million federal grant to construct a LEED-certified factory that will produce lithium ion batteries. President Obama announced this grant as part of $2.4 billion in allocations to accelerate the manufacturing and deployment of U.S. batteries and electric vehicles. Jacksonville, FL is moving forward with an incentive agreement for Saft America Inc. to build a lithium-ion battery facility at Cecil Commerce Center. Saft previously indicated their intent to build a factory in Jacksonville contingent upon the successful negotiations relating to available state and local incentive programs for capital investment and job creation. The public investment programs proposed are critical to the company’s site location decision-making process to ensure economic viability of the program, make Jacksonville competitive with packages being offered by the other locations and help off-set the costs of establishing a manufacturing plant in Jacksonville. Other locations being evaluated for this project include sites in Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia and Ohio. The project would add 279 new, full-time jobs to the local market at an average wage of $44,807, more than 115 percent of the state average wage. In addition, Saft would invest approximately $122 million in new, private capital for facility construction, manufacturing equipment, furniture, fixtures and information technology infrastructure. ”The City of Jacksonville looks forward to having Saft America, Inc. as a strong community partner at Cecil and is eager to see their development of lithium-ion cells and batteries that will help address the nation’s energy needs,” said Mayor Peyton. ”This truly was a collaborative effort with local, state and federal officials working together to attract this international company to Jacksonville and I greatly appreciate all of the hard work. Council President Richard Clark and I, along with leadership from the Jacksonville Regional Chamber of Commerce, were fortunate to have meetings with Saft officials on a recent trip to France that help further strengthen Jacksonville’s position as the ideal location for their battery plant.” The rechargeable batteries produced by this plant will be used by the U.S. military, aviation industries, civilian industries reliant on continuous power streams such as telecommunications, and within the developing U.S. Smart Grid. Saft, the parent company of Saft America, Inc., is the world’s leading designer, developer and manufacturer of advanced technology batteries for industrial and defense applications.


2009 Metro Rankings

2009 Metro Rankings

The economic squeeze has intensified the competition between localities at all levels. Here we give our annual assessment of the best of the best–the cities, towns and MSAs which have executed the most successful strategies and deserve to take a bow as our rankings leaders.







New York Corporate Moves

New York Corporate Moves

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Building $4.2-Billion Microchip Plant in Malta, NY Luther Forest Technology Campus Economic Development Corporation (LFTC) and GLOBALFOUNDRIES held their official groundbreaking last month in Malta, NY for the construction of a $4.2-billion microchip fabrication plant, called Fab 2, marking the beginning of construction of what is planned as the most advanced chip fabrication plant in the world. The project, located in Saratoga County, NY, is expected to create 1,400 high-tech jobs in the region. LFTC is actively seeking additional tenants for the remaining nine development areas. In addition to almost a decade of planning, by economic development entities and state and local government leaders, public-private partnerships have contributed to the success of LFTC. The state of New York has contributed up to $1.2 billion in incentives toward the GLOBALFOUNDRIES project. “The groundbreaking is proof that GLOBALFOUNDRIES is officially a part of Luther Forest Technology Campus and will bring positive benefits to Saratoga County,” said Michael Relyea, president of Luther Forest Technology Campus. “As one of the largest economic development projects in the country, it is monumental in moving the region toward a brighter economic future. This investment in the global economy shows Luther Forest Technology Campus as a model for the nation.” The GLOBALFOUNDRIES project is slated to employee around 1,600 construction workers over the next two to three years plus an additional 2,700 workers for local construction-related jobs. In addition, the fab will create more than 1,400 high-tech jobs with an estimated annual payroll of $88 million once production begins, as well as around 5,000 indirect jobs in the region. The total estimated annual payroll for all jobs is $290 million. “Luther Forest Technology Campus offers an outstanding business environment while Saratoga County and the Capital Region offer an outstanding high quality of living including stellar public education, at the base of the Adirondacks,” said Dennis Brobston, president of Saratoga Economic Development Corporation. The build out of the campus is expected to lead to future growth for Tech Valley, as additional companies move to the area. LFTC is shovel-ready, featuring flexible lot sizes of up to one million square feet for the remaining development areas. The campus has access of up to 15 million gallons per day of fresh water, redundant power with 99-percent reliability, sewer lines and telecommunications. Because the soil composition absorbs vibration, the land is ideal for high-tech construction. Centrally located between New York City, Boston and Montreal, LFTC is close to an international airport, a rail system and a major port. The newly constructed […]



60 Seconds with Rob McClintock, Director of Research of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership

60 Seconds with Rob McClintock, Director of Research of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership

Rob McClintock is Director of Research of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership and state liaison for the Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing, a $50-million collaboration between the Commonwealth, the University of Virginia and Virginia Tech. BF: How quickly will the CCAM be up and running, and where will it be located? RM: CCAM will be located on a 10-acre site near the southern entrance to the 1,000-acre Rolls-Royce Crosspointe manufacturing campus in the Richmond-Petersburg metro area. The facility, to be owned by the University of Virginia Foundation, will be a not-for-profit organization. We anticipate construction beginning in the 4th quarter of 2010, with occupancy early in 2012. BF: CCAM is geared to support Rolls Royce through a new Commonwealth Center for Aerospace Propulsion Systems. Will this academic/industrial collaboration be applied to other sectors? RM: We absolutely view CCAM as a vehicle to help drive broad-based collaboration between industry and academia for the discovery of new manufacturing technologies. CCAM will have an initial research emphasis on surface engineering and manufacturing systems. We anticipate CCAM will add to the growing body of knowledge into advanced manufacturing capability across a wide range of industry sectors. The key is to create an environment of non-competitive collaboration, whereby all members can share in discovery and testing of new manufacturing processes. We have had several other aerospace companies, defense-related manufacturers, manufacturing systems firms, and energy-related companies embrace the concept. The founding members also will reach out to other governmental research institutions and universities to  broaden the membership of the Center. BF: Is the CCAM empowered to commercialize new technologies? RM: Members of CCAM can have the best of both worlds. The CCAM Board will set the core research program undertaken annually by the Center, but members can participate in shared research which can produce intellectual property. Members would receive royalty free, non-exclusive licenses to that shared research as long as they remain members. Additionally, Center members could undertake very company-specific research projects, in which case the member could receive royalty free, exclusive licenses to that research. BF: Has Virginia made a long-term commitment to the CCAM? RM: We believe the future belongs to those who can find ways to bring innovation from the research labs to the production line. We took a similar view with our SRI collaboration with James Madison University to accelerate new drug and vaccine discoveries. We are very hopeful that CCAM provides a useful template that brings the expertise of Virginia’s world-class universities directly to bear on the needs of industry. If […]