Gränges expansion in Newport to focus on foil technology for electric vehicles | now White River

Gränges, an aluminum manufacturer for a variety of foil applications, broke ground earlier this month on the expansion of its Newport facility.

In a pre-holiday announcement from the city of Newport, the Sweden-based company said the expansion makes Gränges the first U.S. facility to invest in battery cathode foil (BCF) production and builds on a past investment in Newport. The investment basis is three years.

“We continue to invest in the foil industry to benefit our customers, employees and the communities in which we operate,” said Patrick Lawlor, President of Gränges Americas. new high-growth industries.”

The expansion is due to the increased demand for battery cathode foils for electric vehicles and the market’s shift towards battery-driven electrification. The expansion will create 43 new jobs, including finishing equipment and clean rooms required for BCF production.

“Gränges is a great example of how foreign direct investment can improve the economic well-being of Arkansas communities, while also illustrating how our state’s business environment can improve the bottom line of international companies who choose to locate here,” the governor said. Asa Hutchinson. “From a dedicated workforce to low business costs to a central location for distribution, Arkansas is gaining worldwide recognition as a state that prioritizes company needs and new technologies from research to market. I am delighted that Gränges chose Arkansas and Looking forward to seeing them continue to grow and prosper.”

Arkansas is one of several locations being considered for the project and is a good fit given Gränges’ Newport facility has a long history in the development of high-end foil applications, the city said in the announcement.

“The State of Arkansas is pleased that Gränges has chosen Newport as the location for this groundbreaking facility,” said Commerce Secretary Mike Preston. “We look forward to working with the company in its efforts to invest and grow its workforce in Newport and increase domestic battery cathode foil production. We believe Arkansas is well suited for Gränges’ future.”

BCFs are an important component of lithium-ion batteries, which are essential in the production of electric vehicles. According to the announcement, Gränges is widely recognized for its global footprint, focus on sustainability and expertise in the development of aluminum alloys.

“Gränges and the Newport Economic Development Council have developed a great working relationship that benefits both the community and the company,” said Jon Chadwell, Newport Economic Development Director. “Newport has great corporate citizens like Gränges, and we are excited to be working with them on a product that is so critical to the future of the automotive industry.”

“Over the past two decades, Newport has experienced a lot of industrial growth,” said Newport Mayor David Stewart. “Gränges revitalized a nearly abandoned factory and brought well-paying, high-quality jobs to our community. We are delighted they chose Newport for this expansion.”

Sweden-based Gränges acquired the Newport facility when it acquired Noranda Aluminum in 2016. Gränges expects battery cathode foil production to start up in the first quarter of 2024.

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