Chinese EV Battery Maker to Build $2B Factory in Illinois
MANTENO, Ill. — Gotion High-Tech Co., Ltd., a global EV battery developer headquartered in China, announced Friday that it is going to build a $2 billion “gigafactory” in this small community about 50 miles south of Chicago.
Gotion specializes in the development of several different types of batteries, but the automotive sector is its prime customer.
The company has also been on something of a growth spurt of late, having only recently announced that it is expanding into Vietnam through a joint venture with VinES, the energy division of VinFast.
During a ceremony at the site of the future battery plant, Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker said the announcement was the culmination of an effort begun two years ago when his administration, in partnership with the state’s business community and General Assembly, “set out to make Illinois a destination for electric vehicle and clean energy companies from across the globe.”
“With the right incentives, nation-leading infrastructure, world-class workforce and booming clean energy production, we have transformed ourselves into an attractive location for global manufacturers,” Pritzker said. “Today, we take another leap forward. It’s my pleasure to welcome Gotion to Illinois and to show the world yet again that Illinois is ready to be a player on the world stage.”
By choosing Illinois for its new plant, Gotion will benefit significantly from the state’s Reimagining Energy and Vehicles Act incentive package, plus a new fund called “Invest in Illinois,” which will provide the EV battery developer with $125 million in capital.
All told, the entire incentive package Gotion will receive is valued at about $536 million, and includes eligibility to receive $213 million in tax benefits over the next 30 years through REV.
In order to qualify for those tax benefits, Gotion must invest a minimum of $1.9 million in the facility and create at least 2,600 full-time jobs that pay at least 120% of the average wage for similar positions in Manteno’s Kankakee County.
Also speaking at Friday’s event was Gotion Chairman Li Zhen who said energy and environmental protection are common challenges that both China and the U.S. share.
“To address them, solar power, wind and energy storage systems are becoming the backbone of a new energy system and accelerate the revolution in the global energy landscape,” Zhen said. “All that we see here [in Illinois] are of enormous value to us: an enabling business environment, a supportive state government for the new energy industry and their highly efficient work, as well as the prospects of the state of Illinois in the coming years.
“When we come to Illinois, we are not building a new factory but are planning to reuse an existing one and bring it back to life again as our way of cherishing and conserving resources. We believe that Gotion’s battery technology will help to boost e-mobility in North America and the economic and trade exchanges between China and the U.S.,” he said.
Gotion said the new facility is expected to begin EV battery production in 2024. Illinois will also fund a manufacturing training academy nearby to prepare regional employees for jobs in the next-generation battery segment.