Major investments by General Motors, Microsoft and a steel maker lead the week’s investment and job creation news:
In Kansas, General Motors plans a $600-million investment in the Fairfax Assembly and Stamping Plant in Kansas City. The investment includes construction of a new 450,000 square-foot paint shop, installation of a new stamping press and other upgrades.
Also in Kansas, GTM Sportswear will build a state-of-the-art UltraFuse Sublimation Center at its campus in Manhattan. The company is a national provider of custom-embellished uniforms, warm-ups and practice apparel for college, school, and club sports teams. The company says the center, the first of its kind in the Midwest, will allow it to fill sublimation orders for customers in a matter of days instead of weeks.
In Arkansas, Big River Steel plans to build a more than $1 billion steel mill in Mississippi County, Arkansas that will directly employ more than 500 people with annual average compensation of $75,000 a year. Big River will produce steel for the automotive, oil and gas and electrical energy industries. The plans are contingent on approval by the legislature authorizing the state to issue $125 million in general obligation bonds.
In Virginia, Microsoft Corp. will invest $348 million to expand its modular data center site in Mecklenburg County. The company will build two additional facilities on its data center campus to increase capacity to serve its growing customer base. The project will create 30 new jobs. Microsoft’s original project in 2010 involved an investment of up to $499 million and 50 new jobs.
In Kentucky, Ashland Inc. plans to invest $15 million and retain 500 full-time jobs at its Calvert City plant. The company plans to add three high-efficiency heat recovery steam generators to the facility, reducing emissions and improving energy efficiency. The Calvert City facility, first built in 1955, was purchased by Ashland in August 2011, when it completed the acquisition of International Specialty Products.
In North Carolina, bioMérieux Inc., a manufacturer of patient health diagnostics solutions, will expand its facility in Durham County. The company plans to create 44 jobs and invest $48.3 million over the next three years in Durham.
In Tennessee, Huf North America will expand its Greeneville facility. The expansion represents an investment of $20 million and the creation of 100 manufacturing jobs. The company will add a 52,000-square-foot addition to its current structure for a plastic injection molding and paint facility.