Hitachi Metals to Double its China Grove Employment

According to the North Carolina Governor’s office, Hitachi Metals will invest approximately $60 million in a ferrite magnet manufacturing plant in China Grove, creating 65 full-time jobs over the next four years and doubling employment at the site.

Hitachi will add a new production unit to meet an increase in global demand for magnets. The neodymium magnets that will be fabricated are engineered primarily for use in hybrid and electric vehicles.

Although salaries will vary by function, the average annual wage for the new jobs will be $43,108, not including benefits.

Hitachi will receive tax incentives from Rowan County and a $153,700 grant from the One North Carolina Fund. And according to Rowan County’s incentive agreement, each year for five years starting in 2013, Hitachi will get 75 percent of the tax revenue generated by the project.

However, Robert Van Geons, director of RowanWorks Economic Development, said the county offered the grant based on Hitachi’s original summer proposal of 148 jobs and $71.6 million investment.

“Our incentives are performance-based,” he said. “If they create more than 65 jobs, they come closer to getting more of the incentives. If they don’t, the grant will be reduced accordingly.”

Van Geons added that the project is planned to grow in phases, so the announcement might not include future expansion.

Gov. Perdue met with company leaders from Hitachi Metals during her recent economic development mission to Asia.

“My top priority is creating jobs, and when we met with Hitachi officials in Asia a few weeks ago, we emphasized the many benefits of expanding in North Carolina,” Perdue said in a press release. “Our state’s top-ranked business climate, skilled workforce and job training programs make a great fit for global manufacturers like Hitachi.”

Mikio Yasuoka, president of Hitachi Metals Neomax Company said Gov. Perdue’s October visit to Japan and the One North Carolina fund grant “were helpful in making the decision to locate in North Carolina. We look forward to our continued good working relationship with the state of North Carolina, Rowan County and the town of China Grove.”