DOE stimulus money helps fund energy storage systems creating hundreds of high-tech jobs
Jacksonville, Florida, 16th September 2011 – Saft, the world's leading designer and manufacturer of high-tech industrial batteries, today inaugurated the world's most advanced automated lithium-ion battery factory, in Jacksonville, Florida.
This high-volume, state-of-the-art production facility is dedicated to building advanced lithium-ion cells and batteries for energy storage for renewable energy, smart grid support, broadband back-up power, transportation and defense.
Saft's 16th facility worldwide is also a unique example of technical innovation, including the production of 1 MW of solar power from the largest rooftop photovoltaic system in Florida and fully-automated, totally flexible production lines capable of building multi new-generation Li-ion technologies.
With an annual sales capacity of $300M, Saft Jacksonville will meet growing customer demand for high performance, competitive energy storage solutions and will play an important part in the development of the new-energy economy.
Saft was presented with incentives from the state of Florida and the city of Jacksonville to build the plant, and construction of the 235,000-square-foot facility was further funded by a $95.5 million federal grant from the Department of Energy under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
John Searle, Saft's CEO declared, "I am delighted that our most advanced facility ever is now ready to serve our customers who are demanding ever higher performance energy storage solutions. Saft's strategy is to actively address these new opportunities with our latest generation lithium-ion technology."
"Having a renowned international company such as Saft choose Jacksonville is a major step in building the economy of tomorrow," said Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown. "The new plant gives us high-tech jobs to help put Jacksonville back to work and is a great example of the good that can come from the public and private sectors working together."
"I am thrilled that Saft will be opening a facility right here in the city of Jacksonville. This is a win-win, both for the local economy in terms of job creation, and for the environment, given that the new facility will produce renewable and smart energy product", said U.S. congresswoman Corrine Brown.
"I applaud Saft's decision to call Jacksonville home," said U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson. "The 300 new jobs that come with this new facility will help provide a boost to the local economy."