Windsor secures new EV feeder plant set to add 300 jobs in the region

The City of Windsor and Invest WindsorEssex announced Friday they have secured a deal with a South Korean company that will feed the electric vehicle supply chain in the region in southwestern Ontario.

City, Invest WindsorEssex announce lease with company set to produce battery casings

City of Windsor, Invest WindsorEssex and Dongshin Motech Ltd. officials stand Friday at the future site of the company's new manufacturing plant. The South Korea-based company will manufacture battery casings used at the region's new electric vehicle battery plant. (Jennifer La Grassa/CBC)

The City of Windsor and Invest WindsorEssex announced Friday they have secured a deal with a South Korean company that will feed the electric vehicle (EV) supply chain in the region in southwestern Ontario. 

City council has approved a lease, and the mayor has signed a letter of intent with the chief executive officer of Dongshin Motech Ltd. — a manufacturing company that will produce aluminum casings for electric vehicle (EV) batteries. 

The casings will be used by the $4.9-billion lithium-ion electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturing plant — a joint venture by Stellantis and LG Energy Solution — that is coming to Windsor in 2024. 

"We've had a very strong relationship with LG Energy Solutions, so we wanted to continue that strong relationship with LG Energy solutions in Windsor and at the same time we are really appreciating the tremendous supports that we are getting from the City of Windsor," said Dongshin Motech's chief executive officer, Choon Woo Lim, through an interpreter. 

The new facility will be 170,000 square feet, with Dongshin Motech investing $60 million to locate operations in Windsor. 

About 300 jobs are expected to be created. 

"This is the first, I hope, of many to come, and it's a significant investment," said Mayor Drew Dilkens. 

"The fact that we're able to land this massive investment in supply chain speaks very well for the region, and there's more to get and we're not stopping here." 

By completion, Dilkens said, the plant will total closer to $90 million. 

The new plant will be on 4.85 hectares (12 acres) of land near Windsor International Airport. The city said the property for the new plant, located west of Wheelton Drive, has a "more than adequate" electricity supply to meet the factory's demand. 

The city will also offer other supports to the new plant through the Economic Revitalization Community Improvement Plan program.

The deal with Dongshin Motech was formed when Mayor Drew Dilkens and IWE visited Poland, and he was invited to tour operations of the South Korean company's plant there. 

In a news release, the city and IWE said securing the feeder plant "confirms the City of Windsor's position as the premier Canadian destination for electric vehicle component manufacturing."

More incentives for the company may come through the Ontario and federal governments, the city said. 

According to the city, Dongshin Motech Ltd. employs about 600 people at facilities in South Korea, Poland and India. 

Since the EV battery plant from Stellantis and LG Energy Solutions was announced, Dilkens said, many other companies have shown interest in coming to Windsor. 

"There is a lot of interest in the Windsor-Essex area, a lot of companies fishing around for space, looking at opportunities here, looking at talent pools and what is available, and trying to figure out where they're going to land."


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