By Anne Cosgrove
From the January / February 2023 Issue
For the second year, Business Facilities’ Deal of the Year Awards were expanded to include Impact Awards across 18 categories. These recognize project investments that will have significant impact in their new or expanded locations, focusing on a specific aspect of the project. Here are the winners of the 2022 Impact Awards:
ASML — AdvanceCT; the Connecticut Department of Economic & Community Development; and Town of Wilton Economic Development Commission
In June 2022, ASML announced a $200 million expansion to its Wilton, CT site, its largest research and development and manufacturing facility outside of its headquarters in the Netherlands. ASML is a manufacturer of complex lithography systems critical to the production of microchips. The company will add 37,000 square feet to an existing 350,000-square-foot facility, the majority dedicated to expanding core operations. Alongside this investment, ASML plans to add 1,000+ full time jobs over the next two years that include manufacturing, design and engineering, and supply chain management—expected to create more than $132 million in direct wages over that period. It’s expected over 500 supply chain jobs will be created as a direct result. Beyond the effects on supply chain manufacturers, the project is expected to add 950+ jobs and more than $65 million in wages to the state’s economy. Construction is expected to be completed in 2024.
American Battery Factory — Pima County; City of Tucson; Sun Corridor, Inc.
In only 90 days Pima County, the City of Tucson, and American Battery Factory (ABF) negotiated a project built around an innovative lease-purchase agreement and local financial incentives. ABF is investing an estimated $1.17 billion to establish its corporate office and first manufacturing facility on 267 acres at the Pima County-owned Aerospace Research Campus. This will be headquarters for ABF’s planned nationwide network of battery manufacturing facilities, or gigafactories. A Lithium-Iron-Phosphate (LFP) prismatic battery cell manufacturer, ABF products are intended for use in industries including electric vehicles, grid energy storage, and retail, commercial, and industrial applications. This project is expected to result in 1,000 new jobs (avg. annual wage $65,000), with an economic impact of $3.1 billion in Pima County over the next 10 years. Regional partners and providers including the City of Tucson, the Arizona Commerce Authority, Sun Corridor Inc., Tucson Electric Power, Pima Community College, and others crafted this deal that balances the public benefit of job creation and economic growth with the needs of ABF.
NextStar Energy Joint Venture: LG Energy Solution and Stellantis N.V. — Invest WindsorEssex
In March 2022, it was announced that battery manufacturer LG Energy Solution and automaker Stellantis N.V. would create a joint venture in Canada: NextStar Energy. As Canada’s first full-scale battery production plant, the venture will see total investment of over $5 billion CAD ($4.1 billion USD) in a manufacturing facility. This represents the biggest single investment in Canada automotive history. The 4.5 million-square-foot battery facility, under construction in Windsor, Ontario, will supply Stellantis plants in Windsor and across North America. The facility is projected to employ 2,500 and produce 46 gigawatts of battery power annually, and is slated to be operational by 2025. As Invest Windsor’s focus has shifted to building out the local supply chain, it is estimated the plant will generate another $1 billion in investment and an additional 1,000 jobs across the Windsor-Essex region.
USA BioEnergy — Texas Forest Country Partnership
USA BioEnergy is a renewable fuels development group that will produce sustainable aviation fuel, renewable diesel, and renewable naphtha from readily available wood waste feedstock. In 2022, the company announced a $1.7 billion project to be located at a site near Bon Wier, TX. The company has since stated project costs for this biorefinery have increased to over $2 billion. The operation is expected to create 142 new direct jobs upon completion of both the initial project and the completion of phase two, which will double production capacity. It will lead to improvements for the school district, the community, and infrastructure. The project was secured with cooperation of: Texas Forestry Association, City of Newton, Newton County, Newton ISD, Sabine River Authority, and Texas Economic Development and Tourism in the Office of the Governor. Partnerships among Angelina College and Stephen F. Austin State University; Texas Workforce Commission, municipalities, and others (Deep East Texas Workforce Solutions; Texas Forestry Association) also pushed the project over the finish line. The project revives an old industry site and brings hope to generations that depend on forest and wood product industries.
In March of 2022, Meta (formerly Facebook) selected Kansas City, MO for a nearly one million-square-foot data center, investing more than $800 million and supporting up to 100 jobs. The data center is expected to be operational in 2024. In addition to its direct economic impact, the project’s indirect impact is expected to be $4.5 billion, 1,177 indirect jobs created, and $1.4 billion in indirect income and wages. Meta’s data center will be located in Kansas City’s Golden Plains Technology Park. The site will be supported by 100% renewable energy, and increase the renewable energy to the region’s local grid. The facility will achieve net-zero carbon emissions and, on average, use 32% less energy and be 80% more water efficient than the industry standard. Among other factors, Meta chose Kansas City for its central location, which offers improved network connectivity between coastal data centers. The Kansas City, MO region also provides competitive energy prices and options for renewable energy.
Manna Beverages & Ventures — Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce
In October 2022, Manna Capital Partners announced plans to invest $600 million to construct an advanced beverage production and distribution complex in Montgomery, AL. This new “beverage park” will create 285 full-time jobs and will be owned and operated by Manna Capital Partners, a minority-owned business enterprise and investment firm. MB&V selected Montgomery because of the state’s focus on sustainable supply chain development, and direct access to Southeast markets. The facility will encompass more than 180 acres in an industrial park developed by Montgomery’s economic development team. The MB&V beverage park will include a 1.7 million-square-foot production facility capable of producing both alcoholic and non-alcoholic products, along with distribution operations. The first bottles are expected to come off the line in 2025. The Montgomery facility will include an R&D center with a bottling line that will provide entrepreneurs (with a focus on women-owned and minority businesses) a place to test new products.
General Motors — Michigan Economic Development Corporation
In January 2022, General Motors (GM) announced its plans for a $7 billion investment in Michigan that includes a focus on electric vehicle and advanced battery manufacturing. This GM investment includes $4 billion to convert its Orion Township assembly plant for the production of full-size EV pickups, with 2,300 jobs created and 1,000 retained. Through its joint venture with LG Energy Solution, GM also plans to construct its third U.S. Ultium high-volume battery cell manufacturing facility in the city of Lansing and Delta Township, with an investment up to $2.5 billion, with 1,700 jobs created. Over 20 years, more than $28.8 billion in new personal income is expected to be generated by the direct, indirect, and induced job creation. In addition, the project has an employment multiplier of 3.8, which means that an additional 2.8 jobs in Michigan’s economy are anticipated to be created for every new direct job, due to the state’s supply chain.
Venture Global CP2 — Louisiana Economic Development (LED); Southwest Louisiana Economic Development Alliance (SWLA)
Louisiana continues its emergence as a leader in the global energy transition with Venture Global investing in its third multi-billion dollar liquefied natural gas production and export facility project in the state. The company will invest more than $10 billion in a new LNG facility in Cameron Parish that will employ carbon capture and sequestration technology (CCS) to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. The project—which Venture Global named CP2 in deference to its first LNG facility at Calcasieu Pass in Cameron Parish (announced in 2014)—will create 200 direct jobs (avg. annual salary $120,000+). Louisiana Economic Development estimates the project will result in 867 new indirect and induced jobs, for a total of 1,067 new jobs in southwest Louisiana. At the peak of construction, the company estimates 2,300 construction jobs will be created. Project impacts will reach local, parish, state, regional, national, and international economies that rely on natural gas to heat homes in the winter and power industrial processes year-round.
Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)
LG Chem — Clarksville Economic Development Council
LG Chem chose Clarksville, TN for the site of its new cathode manufacturing facility, which will support the electric vehicle battery value-chain in the U.S. The company’s investment of $3.2 billion represents the single largest announced foreign direct investment (FDI) in Tennessee history. The project is expected to create 860 new jobs in Montgomery County. The Clarksville facility will be the largest of its kind in the U.S. and will produce approximately 120,000 tons of cathode material annually by 2027. The plant is scheduled to be in production by the second half of 2025. The Tennessee site will play a critical role in LG Chem’s strategy to increase its battery materials business by producing advanced NCMA cathode materials containing nickel, cobalt, manganese and aluminum for next-generation EV batteries. Operation of the new facility will rely fully on renewable energy—solar and hydroelectric power
Financial Office Campus
Wells Fargo Corporate Campus — Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce; Irving Economic Development Partnership (TX)
Wells Fargo plans to invest $450 million into Irving, TX to build a new campus. This investment will bring 650 direct jobs to the Irving area, as well as generate over $800 million in economic output. The project is expected to be completed and fully operational by 2025. Over the next 10 years, the Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber estimates the Wells Fargo project will generate millions of dollars in tax revenue for local government entities. Wells Fargo’s growth in Irving-Las Colinas adds to the area’s increasing number of financial industry leaders. Finance and insurance have historically been a strong sector in the Dallas-Fort Worth region. Wells Fargo’s new facility in Irving-Las Colinas is currently the second-largest, new-build project in the region. Developer KDC and engineers from Kimley Horn will build two 400,000-square-foot multi-story buildings for Wells Fargo, a portion of which will be constructed along the city’s 125-acre, manmade lake in the heart of the Las Colinas urban center.
Panasonic Energy — Kansas Department of Commerce
Panasonic Energy is investing $4 billion to build its state-of-the-art electric lithium-ion battery manufacturing facility in Johnson County, Kansas. The EV battery site is expected to create 4,000 new full-time jobs (avg. annual salary $50,000). Indirect job creation estimates are 2,047; induced effect job estimates are 1,763. According to the Kansas Department of Commerce, the Kansas City Area Development Council, and its partners the project is slated to be the largest economic development project in state history. Due to its scale, the project will add about $53.7 million to state and local government revenues. The state-of-the-art facility will create and supply lithium-ion batteries, with a focus on rapidly ramping up the manufacture of 2170 cylindrical Li-ion batteries. Panasonic Energy’s goal is to begin mass production in Johnson County, Kansas by March 2025.
Redwood Materials — South Carolina Department of Commerce
With a $3.5 billion investment, Redwood Materials will build a new facility in Berkeley County, South Carolina to manufacture its anode and cathode battery components for electric vehicles. Sited on 600+ acres at Camp Hall Commerce Park in Ridgeville. This largest investment in state history will create 1,500 permanent jobs by 2027, with more than 5,300 construction-related jobs. The annual economic impact of the facility’s operations on South Carolina is estimated to rise from an initial dollar volume of $136 million in 2023 to over $1.4 billion by 2027. Redwood’s investment is also expected to bring in over $5.6 billion of economic impact to South Carolina during the five-year construction phase. The company will use its Berkeley County campus to create a circular supply chain for electric vehicles, by producing two of the critical components in batteries—the anode and cathode. This production will drive down costs and emissions while securing a supply chain within the U.S.
Nucor Corp. — West Virginia Department of Economic Development
Nucor Corporation will make its single largest investment in company history with the location of a more than $2.7 billion state-of-the-art sheet steel mill in Mason County, West Virginia. The project also represents the largest capital investment in West Virginia history. A Fortune 150 company and the largest steel producer in the U.S., Nucor produces steel by recycling scrap metal in electric arc furnaces, making it North America’s largest recycler of any material and a leader in sustainable steel production. Slated to be complete in 2024, the mill will employ approximately 800 people and produce up to three million tons of sheet steel per year. Construction will create about 1,000 jobs. Nucor is considering building a transloading and processing center in the northern part of West Virginia to facilitate logistics to customers in the upper Midwestern and Northeastern U.S., creating additional jobs. The predicted economic impact on the area is $16.8 billion.
Lancium — Development Corporation of Abilene
Lancium is a Houston, TX-based energy technology and infrastructure company that advances the decarbonization and stability of the electrical grid. The company chose Abilene, TX in Taylor County for its flagship renewable energy-powered Clean Campus. Its proprietary software enables a Lancium Clean Campus to act as an ERCOT designated “Controllable Load Resource,” which allows the grid to absorb more renewable energy during peak demand times. Lancium will invest $2.4 billion over 20 years to build the one gigawatt Clean Campus on over 1,000 acres in Abilene. Beginning at 200 megawatts, the project is forecasted to create 57 full-time jobs with an estimated annual payroll and benefits of $4.1 million. Abilene’s strategic location and proximity to abundant wind and solar generation were key factors in Lancium’s site selection decision.
Research & Development (R&D)
Exact Sciences — Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation
Exact Sciences, a leading global cancer screening and diagnostics company, is expanding its presence in Wisconsin by investing an additional $350 million in its Madison, WI campuses, an investment expected to create more than 1,300 jobs. The company will add to its west-side Madison campus in three areas, the most significant of which is the Research and Development (R&D) Center of Excellence to enhance research capabilities as the company combats the world’s deadliest cancers; laboratory space with new technology and automation; and warehouse. Exact Sciences relocated to Wisconsin in 2009 and has consistently continued to expand in the state. Predicted direct economic impact for this most recent expansion project is $145.8 million, and predicted wages impact is nearly $140 million. The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) Board of Directors has authorized increasing the company’s Enterprise Zone tax credits from $9 million to $27.5 million, if the company creates at least 1,300 new jobs and invests at least $350 million in capital expenditures by 2025.
Ball Corp./Manna Capital Partners — New Mexico Partnership
Through its capital investment partnership Manna Capital Partners and Ball Corporation chose New Mexico in May 2022 for a new aluminum can sheet rolling mill and recycling center. The project will invest more than $2 billion into the construction of this facility that will be located in Valencia, NM in Valencia County. Predicted indirect economic impact is $3.4 billion. Manna Capital Partners and Ball Corp. have committed to creating 950 jobs at the facility, which will be powered with 100% renewable energy produced by PNM. With planned manufacturing capacity of up to 1.3 billion pounds of aluminum annually, the partnership also plans to ensure 85% recycled content when the mill is fully operational. This project, and the state’s focus on creating innovative ways to attract “green” manufacturing expansions, will play a role in meeting New Mexico’s net zero emissions goal.
Tech Office Campus
CoStar Group, Inc. — Virginia Economic Development Partnership; Greater Richmond Partnership
CoStar Group, the leading provider of real estate information and analytics, will invest $460 million to establish a corporate campus in Richmond, VA. The investment will create 2,000 jobs making this city CoStar Group’s largest employee hub in the world. The new facility will be set on four acres adjacent to the company’s current facility, which serves as its headquarters for research and data analytics. The new campus is expected to include a 26-story, LEED-certified office building and a six-story, multipurpose building. The firm is now among Richmond’s largest technology companies, one of the 25 largest private employers in Richmond, and will be among the companies with the most real estate in the city. CoStar’s project will include public infrastructure improvements around the campus funded up to $15 million by the Commonwealth through the Major Employment and Investment Project Approval Commission. The upgrades will focus on commuter and pedestrian access to the campus, roadway and traffic improvements, safety and offsite utility extensions. Predicted direct economic impact on the state is $8 billion.
VinFast — Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC); Chatham County Economic Development Corporation
VinFast will create 7,500 jobs in North Carolina during phase one of its new electric vehicle plant. The Vietnamese car maker chose Chatham County, North Carolina to locate its first North American automotive assembly and battery manufacturing plant, representing an investment of $4 billion after phase two of the project. Located at the Triangle Innovation Point (TIP) megasite in Chatham County, the factory to be built in phase one represents a $2 billion investment and is sited on a nearly 2,000-acre plot focused on three main areas: electric cars and buses production and assembly; EVs battery production; and ancillary industries for suppliers. It is expected to be fully operational in July 2024. Predicted indirect employment is more than 8,300. Direct construction employment is expected to reach 20,500 over five years. Chatham County estimates that by 2030 the VinFast plant will generate $8.5 million in annual local property tax revenue within the county, after incentives. VinFast’s project is estimated to grow the state’s economy by at least $71.59 billion over three decades.