Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced Whirlpool Corporation will invest $5 million to consolidate its headquarters in the Benton Harbor-St. Joseph area after its recent acquisition of Maytag, a move that will create 833 jobs, including up to 400 added directly by the company. Assistance offered through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation helped convince the company to choose Michigan instead of other out-of-state sites.
The Governor made the announcement via a telephone call from Japan, where she and Michigan Economic Development Corporation President and CEO James Epolito are meeting with companies to encourage investment and job creation in Michigan.
"We have been tireless in our effort to win these jobs," Granholm said. "Whirlpool's decision to invest and bring jobs to Michigan is a testament to our aggressive strategy to attract new business investment, grow new jobs and build strong communities."
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation approved a Single Business Tax credit valued at more than $10.4 million over 13 years to help convince Whirlpool Technologies LLC to invest in Michigan. The consolidation also paves the way for the potential of up to 150 additional jobs in Michigan.
"The expansion of our Benton Harbor headquarters will support the business transition and integration of Maytag, as well as the continued growth of our North American and global business," Whirlpool Corporation Chairman and CEO Jeff M. Fettig said. "Our belief in improving the quality of life available in Southwest Michigan, together with the support of our headquarters community, gives us the confidence that we can attract great talent and bring up to 400 additional positions to the area."
"Whirlpool is a Michigan-born economic success story," Epolito said. "Thanks to our innovative economic incentive tools and strong community partnership, the company will continue to thrive and create new jobs in Michigan. I applaud the city, county and business leaders who collaborated to secure these new jobs and new opportunities in southwest Michigan and the entire state."
An economic analysis conducted by the University of Michigan estimates that increased economic activity created by the Whirlpool consolidation will generate an additional 433 indirect Michigan jobs, in addition to the 400 created directly by the company. The project is expected to generate more than $600 million in personal income for Michigan workers over the life of the tax credit.
"We are very fortunate to have Whirlpool Corporation as a part of this community," Cornerstone Alliance Executive Vice President Wendy Dant Chesser said. "Today's announcement creates a large number of opportunities. The groundwork is being laid to transform the entire community for years to come."
The Benton Harbor project is one of three the Governor announced today. In all, they are expected to create and retain a total of 3,060 Michigan jobs.
"This is great news for all of Berrien County," Berrien County Administrator Bill Wolf said. "Working with our local municipalities, we are pleased to be providing additional local incentives to assist Whirlpool Corporation as they work to create opportunities in our county. We are very grateful for their continued dedication to growing our area."
Whirlpool Technologies LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Whirlpool Corporation, the world's leading manufacturer and marketer of major home appliances with annual sales of more than $19 billion. The company operates more than 60 global manufacturing and technology research centers and markets Whirlpool, Maytag, KitchenAid, Jenn-Air, Amana, Brastemp, Bauknecht and other major brand names to consumers in nearly every country.
In her 2006 State of the State address, Granholm emphasized the importance of making Michigan a global economic powerhouse in the 21st century. Since January 2005, the Governor and the MEDC have announced the creation or retention of more than 85,000 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. For more information on the Michigan Economic Development Corporation's initiatives and programs, visit the Web site at www.michigan.org.
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Personal Income Generated over Life
of 13-Year Tax Credit Agreement
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