Panasonic Energy plans to expand its production of EV batteries as the automotive industry shifts to more sustainable electric technologies. (Photo courtesy Panasonic Energy Co., Ltd.)

The project is expected to drive significant economic activity and opportunities for the local economy

July13, 2022

TOPEKA, Kan.—The State of Kansas recently approved a state incentive application, submitted by Panasonic Energy Co., Ltd., to make Kansas the location for a proposed U.S.-based lithium-ion battery manufacturing facility.

The incentive program, Attracting Powerful Economic Expansion (APEX), was established by the State of Kansas to attract investment in the state. It is available to qualified companies, within specific industry sectors, that agree to invest at least $1.0 billion, according to a release from Panasonic Corporation of North America.

The agreement, jointly announced by Panasonic Energy and Kansas Governor Laura Kelly, is pending approval by Panasonic Holdings Corporation Board of Directors. Panasonic Energy is a Panasonic Group company.

The project is expected to drive significant economic activity and opportunities for the local economy, with the possibility of creating up to 4,000 new jobs and generating investment of approximately $4 billion. Panasonic Energy has identified a site in De Soto, Kansas for the potential project, according to the release.

“This project will be transformative for the Kansas economy, providing high-quality, high-tech jobs while bringing a new industry to the state that is forging a more sustainable future,” said Governor Laura Kelly, in the release. “This is a significant milestone for Kansas that is sure to drive economic growth and development.”

Panasonic Energy is a global developer and manufacturer of lithium-ion batteries. The company plans to expand its production of EV batteries as the automotive industry shifts to more sustainable electric technologies, according to the release. Panasonic Energy said it has contributed to achieving greater efficiency and economies of scale necessary to drive this transformation, and the planned facility in Kansas supports its commitment to contribute to society by reducing global carbon emissions.

“With the increased electrification of the automotive market, expanding battery production in the U.S. is critical to help meet demand,” said Kazuo Tadanobu, president and CEO of Panasonic Energy Co., Ltd., in the release. ”Given our leading technology and depth of experience, we aim to continue driving growth of the lithium-ion battery industry and accelerating towards a net-zero emissions future.”

The announcement comes five years after Panasonic Group began production of lithium-ion batteries at Panasonic Energy of North America (PENA) in Sparks, Nevada. PENA is now one of the world’s largest lithium-ion battery factories, surpassing 6 billion EV battery cells shipped, according to the release. While PENA’s operations in Sparks, Nevada will continue, the new facility in Kansas is intended to further support Panasonic’s long-term commitment to advancing the EV industry in the U.S., the company said.

“Kansas has an impressive history of being home to a skilled manufacturing workforce,” said Kris Takamoto, executive vice president of Panasonic Energy Co., Ltd., and head of the firm’s EV Battery Business, in the release. “We appreciate Kansas’s dedication to sustainability and its commitment to and growth in the clean and renewable energy space.”

Subscribe Now

Design-2-Part Magazine

Get the manufacturing industry news and features you need for free in a format you like.

FREE Print, Digital, or Both »

You have Successfully Subscribed!