©2016 Michigan Economic Development Corporation

Governor Announces 10 Development Projects, 5,006 Jobs for Michigan Workers

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Michael Shore, MEDC
(517) 335-4590

Diverse Projects Expected to Generate $268 Million in Private Investment

Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced nine company expansions and a brownfield redevelopment project that will create and retain up to 5,006 new jobs and attract more than $268 million in private investment to Michigan. Incentives from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation were instrumental in convincing the companies to expand in Michigan instead of locations outside the state.

"The number and diversity of these projects demonstrate that Michigan is a great place to grow a business and create jobs in manufacturing and emerging technology industries," Granholm said. "We need both to build a strong 21st century economy."

The projects are:

  • ALD Thermal Treatment Inc., a subsidiary of German-owned ALD Vacuum Technologies, plans to invest $20 million to expand in Port Huron instead of competing sites in Ohio and Canada. The project is expected to create 132 new jobs, including 95 directly by the company. A state Single Business Tax (SBT) credit valued at $915,000 over the next seven years helped convince the company to opt for Michigan. The city of Port Huron has also proposed tax abatements valued at about $1.6 million. ALD specializes in advanced vacuum heating services used in the specialized manufacturing of precision auto parts including fuel injector and transmission components.
  • American Axle & Manufacturing will invest a total of $80 million in two of its Michigan facilities-$73 million in Detroit and $7 million in Three Rivers-to accommodate the manufacture of General Motors' next generation of full size pickups and sport utility vehicles (SUV). The project will save a total of 1,568 Michigan jobs, including 458 in Detroit and 198 in Three Rivers directly by the company. An SBT credit valued at more than $7.7 million over eight years as well as an Economic Development Job Training grant of up to $458,000 helped persuade the company to expand in Michigan. The city of Detroit is expected to consider a tax abatement valued at $8.3 million over 12 years in support of the Detroit location. The city of Three Rivers has also offered a 12-year tax abatement valued at $364,000.
  • Commonwealth Associates Inc., an engineering firm that designs power delivery systems including alternative energy integration systems, plans to invest $2.8 million to expand its operations in Jackson and create 127 jobs, including 50 new, highly-skilled jobs directly by the company over five years. An incentive package including an SBT credit valued at approximately $947,000 and a local property tax abatement of $223,700 approved by Blackman Township helped convince the company to invest in Michigan instead of a competing site in Atlanta.
  • Compact Power Inc. plans to invest $18.1 million to locate a new research and development center in Troy instead of expanding an existing facility in Colorado. A subsidiary of LG Chem., the largest chemical company in South Korea, Compact Power develops lithium polymer battery packs for electric, hybrid fuel cell vehicles and military and aerospace applications. The project is expected to create 298 new jobs, including 168 directly by the company. An SBT credit valued at more than $3.8 million over the next 10 years helped convince the company to expand in Michigan. To further support the project, the city of Troy will provide $50,000 for necessary road improvements and is willing to support NextEnergy personal property tax exemptions worth up to $820,500.
  • Duncan Aviation will invest $19.5 million to expand its aircraft service facility in Battle Creek. The project is expected to create 726 jobs, including 380 directly by the company. An SBT credit valued at approximately $2.2 million as well as an Economic Development Job Training grant of up to $175,000 motivated Duncan to choose Michigan over its headquarters location in Nebraska.
  • J & L America Inc. plans to invest $11.8 million to centralize and expand its headquarters and business operations in Southfield instead of competing locations out of state. The project is expected to create 454 new jobs, including 300 directly by the company. An SBT credit valued at more than $3.4 million over the next eight years helped make the case for staying in Michigan. The city of Southfield approved a tax abatement valued at more than $178,000. J&L is a wholly owned subsidiary of Kennemetal Inc., a leading global supplier of tooling, engineered components and advanced materials consumed in production processes. Combined, J & L and Kennemetal affiliates employ 549 workers in Michigan.
  • Mexicantown Commercial Properties will develop vacant, partially tax-reverted property located in the Mexicantown community in southeast Detroit into a two-building complex. It will incorporate one of the state's Welcome Centers, retail space, a business incubator and a public plaza. Located about 500 feet from the U.S.-Canadian border, the Mexicantown International Welcome Center will have a projected 1.8 million visitors a year upon completion. State and local tax capture valued at more than $1.3 million will help prepare the property for development. The project is expected to create 63 new jobs.
  • Stryker Corporation, one of the world's largest medical products and services companies, will invest approximately $20.4 million to build a new headquarters in Kalamazoo. The project will create 165 new jobs, including 100 directly by the company. A Single Business Tax credit valued at approximately $5.8 million helped the company decide to expand in Michigan instead of a competing location in New Jersey. Kalamazoo is considering a local abatement valued at $471,600.
  • United Solar Ovonic LLC, the world leader in thin-film photovoltaics for solar energy conversion, plans to invest more than $80.2 million to locate a new production facility in Auburn Hills. Tax credits valued at more than $6.1 million over 20 years and a $100,000 Economic Development Job Training Grant helped the company decide to locate the facility in Michigan over a competing site in Ohio. To further support the project, the city of Auburn Hills has proposed a tax abatement valued at $109,100 and is willing to support Next Energy personal property tax exemptions that could be worth an estimated $6.9 million over the next eight years. The facility is expected to create 625 new jobs, including 230 directly by the company. A wholly owned subsidiary of Energy Conversion Devices (ECD Ovonic) (NASDAQ:ENER), United Solar currently employs nearly 200 employees in Troy and Auburn Hills.

"Michigan's business climate is getting better by the day," MEDC President and CEO Don Jakeway said. "Our efforts to grow our technological industries through building on our leadership in manufacturing and higher education is creating more opportunities for high-tech companies to take root and grow in the state."

In an effort to carry on this momentum, the Governor recently outlined details of her Jobs for Michigan Fund, a $2 billion bond initiative to provide a stable source of funding for research and commercialization efforts in several targeted high-tech, high growth industries. The bond issue requires legislative approval to be placed on the ballot for Michigan voters to decide in November. According to federal statistics, the initiative can be expected to result in at least 72,000 new jobs for Michigan workers over the next 10 years.

In her 2005 State of the State address, Granholm mphasized the importance of aking Michigan a global economic powerhouse in the 21st century. In he past 12 months the Governor and the MEDC announced the creation or retention of more than 43,350 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.