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Navico Group Expands Production, Electrification Efforts in Michigan

The project is expected to generate a total capital investment of $32.7 million and create 80 jobs.

Boat
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Navico Group, a supplier of integrated systems and products for the marine and RV industries, announced an investment in its Lowell, Michigan, operations, where it will create two Centers of Excellence in metal fabrication and electrification.

The investment will increase quality, capacity and efficiency, as well as improve product manufacturing capabilities. The project is expected to generate a total capital investment of $32.7 million and create 80 jobs with the support of a $480,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant.

The metal fabrication Center of Excellence will be equipped with the latest laser and robotic fabrication technology to aid in the development and production of high-quality products for the marine industry. Most of these products will come to market under the Attwood brand.

The new state-of-the-art battery lab and assembly capability will aid in the design and development of custom power solutions for the nearly 20 end-markets that Navico Group serves with brands like Mastervolt and RELiON Battery.

The lab will enable engineers to develop and test end-to-end battery technologies, from bespoke battery management systems to emergent cell chemistries. The establishment of this battery facility will bolster the global expansion of Navico Group’s electrification efforts and become the second electrification Center of Excellence in addition to the company’s Amsterdam facility.

The project will bring immediate, well-paying jobs to the region with a large and expanding recreational marine supplier and will help secure the company’s continued presence and future investment in Michigan.

It is the first Navico Group site to reach zero-waste-to-landfill status, meaning 90% of its waste materials are being recycled, reused or otherwise eliminated.

The city of Lowell anticipates approval of a 12-year, 50% tax abatement in support of the project.

The project also highlights Michigan’s travel and tourism industries. Michigan is the third-largest marine market in the country and ranks No. 3 in boat registrations. Boating has a $11.7 billion economic impact on Michigan’s economy each year, supporting more than 45,000 jobs and 1,500 businesses (source: Michigan Boating Industries Association).

According to new federal data on the outdoor recreation economy, Michigan is gaining momentum in outdoor recreation-based manufacturing like boat building. The state saw a 35% growth in value added to GDP from outdoor recreation manufacturing from 2019 to 2022, and ranked fourth nationally in outdoor manufacturing employment growth (7%) and outdoor manufacturing compensation growth (12%) from 2021-2022.

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