Kansas lands $4 billion and 4,000-job Panasonic Energy EV battery factory

~~Governor Laura Kelly Successfully Wins Largest Economic Development Project in State History~~

TOPEKA – Today, Kansas Governor Laura Kelly announced that Panasonic Energy Co., Ltd., plans to build one of the largest such electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturing plants in the United States in Kansas. Pending approval from the board of directors of Panasonic Holdings Corporation, the company has identified a site in De Soto for the potential project.

The planned project is expected to create up to 4,000 new jobs and lead to an investment of up to $4 billion, representing the largest economic development project in Kansas history. The development will have ripple effects throughout the regional and state economy, supporting approximately 4,000 additional jobs created by community suppliers and businesses and 16,500 construction jobs, as noted in a study Independent Economic Impact Study from Wichita State University.

“As the largest private investment in Kansas history and one of the largest electric vehicle battery manufacturing plants of its kind in the country, this project will be transformative for our state’s economy, providing the total 8,000 high-quality jobs that will help more Kansans create better lives for themselves and their children,” said Kansas Governor Laura Kelly. “Winning this project shows that Kansas has what it takes to be globally competitive – and that our business-friendly climate is driving the technological innovation needed to achieve a more prosperous and sustainable future.”

This planned state-of-the-art facility will create and supply lithium-ion batteries and accelerate the future of electric vehicle innovation globally. Panasonic Energy’s current US battery manufacturing facility has shipped over six billion EV battery cells. Panasonic Energy plans to expand its production of batteries for electric vehicles as the automotive industry shifts to more sustainable electric technologies. The proposed development would boost the regional economy, creating opportunities for community vendors and businesses.

“With the increased electrification of the automotive market, expanding battery production in the United States is essential to meet demand,” said Kazuo Tadanobu, Chairman and CEO of Panasonic Energy. “Given our cutting-edge technology and deep experience, we aim to continue to drive the growth of the lithium-ion battery industry and accelerate towards a zero-net emissions future.”

Lieutenant Governor and Secretary of Commerce David Toland noted that the competition for this landmark project was strong and required a coordinated effort from the state. A key part of that endeavor was the enactment of the bipartisan Attracting Powerful Economic Expansion (APEX) Act earlier this year.

“Once Governor Kelly signed into law APEX”, To land said, “The state has obtained the economic development tool needed to pursue megaprojects that have the potential to transform Kansas’ economy. Panasonic recognized Kansas not only as a competitor, but as the ideal partner for this revolutionary project. »

Panasonic Energy chose Kansas because of its conducive business climate, strong talent pool and skills, support for technological innovation, strong transportation infrastructure and central location. This builds on the strengths of Kansas City’s manufacturing and automotive industry.

“With this major development, Kansas is recognized around the world for its talented workforce, innovative environment and quality of life,” said U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (Kan.). “Panasonic will bring thousands of high-paying, high-quality jobs to our state, which will provide tremendous economic benefit to local businesses and our communities for decades to come. In an effort to make Kansas a destination for industry, defense, education, science, technology, engineering and innovation, we will keep our students, their knowledge and their intelligence in Kansas.

Kansas has an established battery manufacturing industry with seven facilities employing approximately 1,300 people. The state was ranked second in the nation for employment and wage concentration in the sector in 2021. With the ability to potentially add an additional 4,000 jobs, this deal will position Kansas as an industry leader at a when the sector is expected to grow at an annualized rate of 2.4%.

“Kansas is proving to be an attractive place where entrepreneurs can unleash innovation and create jobs,” said Senator Ty Masterson, President of the Kansas Senate. “Panasonic’s announcement shows the attraction is global.”

“When the Kansas Legislature passed the APEX legislation, that was the kind of megaproject we had in mind,” said Representative Ron Ryckman, Speaker of the Kansas House of Representatives.

The proposed Panasonic project is the latest economic development win recently announced by the state:

  • Last month, Governor Kelly said the state had surpassed $9 billion in new private sector investment since January 2019, resulting in the creation or maintenance of more than 43,500 jobs.
  • Also in June, Kansas received the prestigious Gold Shovel Award from Area Development magazine for the second year in a row. The back-to-back wins are unprecedented in state history.
  • In March, Kansas won Site Selection magazine’s Governor’s Cup for having the largest per capita economic development investment in the nation.

“On behalf of the City Council and the community, I am delighted to welcome Panasonic Energy to De Soto. The scale of Panasonic Energy’s investment in our community will usher in unprecedented generational economic prosperity for the state and region,” said Rick Walker, Mayor of De Soto. “We are honored to be part of it.”

The Kansas City area is the third fastest growing technology market in the United States and is a hub of automotive engineering, technology and manufacturing expertise. With a strong talent pool and industry-leading training programs, the Kansas City market employs nearly 21,000 workers who contribute to KC’s $19 billion transportation manufacturing industry.

“Panasonic Energy made the right choice to select the Kansas City area because of our market strengths in electrical and technology innovation,” said Tim Cowden, President and CEO of the Kansas City Area Development Council. “This announcement, alongside FIFA’s selection of KC as the host city for the 2026 World Cup, the coming online of our new one-terminal airport and the global technology companies investing in the market, reinforces the transformational success of our region globally.”

“The electric vehicle industry is set to grow eight times its size in less than 10 years, which is an incredible opportunity for states, communities and energy partners to support leading innovative technology companies,” said David Campbell, President and CEO of Evergy. On behalf of our region’s business community, we are delighted to welcome Panasonic Energy to Kansas and the Kansas City area, and look forward to supporting your long-term success.

The following organizations have supported Panasonic Energy’s recruitment in Kansas: Kansas Department of Commerce; Kansas Department of Transportation; Kansas Department of Health and Environment; Kansas Department of Children and Families; the Honorable Rahm Emanuel, United States Ambassador to Japan; the United States Embassy in Tokyo; Kansas Children’s Cabinet and Trust Fund; City of Soto; De Soto Economic Development Council; Evergy; Sunflower Development Group; KC SmartPort; Johnson County Community College; Kansas City, Kansas Community College; Peaslee Tech; University of Kansas; Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation; and the Kansas City Area Development Council.

To learn more about the project, its economic impact and its incentive package, read a page here.

About Panasonic Energy Co., Ltd.

Panasonic Energy Co., Ltd., established in April 2022 as part of the Panasonic Group’s transition to an operating company system, provides innovative battery technology-based products and solutions worldwide. With its automotive lithium-ion batteries, storage battery systems and dry-cell batteries, the company brings safe, reliable and convenient power to a wide range of industries, from mobility and social infrastructure to medical products. and consumption. Panasonic Energy is committed to contributing to a society that achieves happiness and environmental sustainability, and through its business activities, the Company aims to solve societal problems while taking the lead in environmental initiatives. For more details, please visit panasonic.com/global/energy.

About the Kansas Department of Commerce
As the state’s premier economic development agency, the Kansas Department of Commerce works to empower individuals, businesses, and communities to achieve prosperity in Kansas. Commerce accomplishes its mission by developing relationships with businesses, site location consultants, and stakeholders in Kansas, across the country, and around the world. Our strong partnerships allow us to help create an environment for existing Kansas businesses to grow and foster an innovative and competitive landscape for new businesses. Thanks to Commerce’s project successes, Kansas received the prestigious Gold Shovel Award from Area Development magazine in 2021 and 2022, and received the 2021 Governor’s Cup from Site Selection magazine. | KansasCommerce.gov

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