Last week, Kentucky landed yet another electric-vehicle investment. LOTTE Aluminum Materials USA will build a $238.7 million aluminum foil manufacturing operation in Elizabethtown that will create 122 new jobs.
According to Governor Andy Beshear, who made the announcement, the deal is the latest in a string of EV suppliers drawn to the region by the EV ecosystem Beshear hopes will "last for generations to come."
In a joint venture with LOTTE Aluminum, LOTTE Chemical will build a manufacturing facility to produce 36,000 tons of cathode foil, an ultra-thin aluminum foil that is a core material used in EV batteries.
The company anticipates demand for the material to increase by an average of 32% annually by 2030. The plant will be the company's first aluminum foil facility on U.S. soil and will be operational by 2025.
The two companies in the venture are subsidiaries of LOTTE Group, one of the largest conglomerates in South Korea. It employs more than 80,000 people across many different industries.
Since June 2020, Kentucky has seen more than $8.5 billion in EV-related investments, with well over 8,000 full-time jobs announced.
In September 2021, Ford and SK Innovation announced a $5.8 billion investment that will create 5,000 jobs in Hardin County. In April 2022, Envision AESC announced a $2 billion investment that will create 2,000 jobs in Warren County.
The deal comes with an incentive package from the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority that can provide up to $3.3 million as long as the company maintains the nearly $240 million investment and hits some annual targets, including creating and keeping 122 Kentucky-resident, full-time jobs across ten years; and paying an average hourly wage of $23.35 including benefits across those jobs.
The company can also receive $1 million in tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA), which allows companies to recoup sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in R&D and electronic processing.