WEIRTON, WV (LOOTPRESS) – Form Energy, Inc., an American technology company developing and commercializing a new class of cost-effective, multi-day energy storage systems, held a groundbreaking and beam signing ceremony to celebrate the start of construction of Form Factory 1, the company’s first high-volume manufacturing facility. Located in Weirton, West Virginia, Form Factory 1 will employ at least 750 people when operating at full capacity.
Form Energy was joined by federal, state, and local officials, as well as customers, investors, and stakeholders from across the region to celebrate the exciting milestone.
“Today’s announcement here in the heart of steel country will unlock new opportunities for energy communities that have helped power our nation for generations, and is a huge win—for Weirton, for West Virginia, and for America,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “Thanks to historic incentives in the Inflation Reduction Act, companies across the nation are beginning to invest in America again—strengthening our energy security and domestic manufacturing capabilities while creating good-paying jobs right here at home.”
Form Energy selected Weirton, West Virginia as the home of its first factory after a robust, year-long, nationwide site selection process that included reviewing over 500 candidate locations across 16 states. The company ultimately chose a 55-acre site in Weirton because of the historic steel community’s strong cultural heritage and the site’s direct access to rail, hardened highways, and the Ohio River.
CEO of Form Energy, Mateo Jaramillo, said at today’s ceremony, “When we founded Form Energy, we set out to transform the electric grid through reliable, low-cost multi-day energy storage made in America. Today, as we commence construction of our first U.S. battery manufacturing facility, we celebrate the transformation and revitalization of this historic industrial steel site and that we are one step closer to delivering on our mission of manufacturing energy storage systems for a better world right here in West Virginia. We are thankful to the many leaders and individuals who helped us get to this critical milestone, including federal leadership — U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm, Senator Joe Manchin, Senator Shelley Moore Capito — and West Virginia state leadership — Governor Jim Justice, Economic Development Secretary Mitch Carmichael, Senate President Craig Blair, Speaker Roger Hanshaw of the House of Delegates, Senator Weld and Delegate Zatezalo and the local officials in the City of Weirton and in Hancock County.”
Form Energy will begin manufacturing and assembling its iron-air battery systems at the Weirton factory for broad commercialization in mid-to-late 2024. Form Factory 1 will have an annual production capacity of 500 megawatts of batteries when in full operation.
U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV), Chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, remarked, “For generations, West Virginians have done the heavy lifting. We’ve mined the coal that forged the steel that built the tanks and ships and the greatest industrial might the world has ever known. The sacrifices our families and workers have made to power the country and keep the lights on have helped the United States become the superpower of the world and a global energy leader. With today’s groundbreaking, West Virginia is once again stepping up to the plate and building on our legacy as America’s energy powerhouse while helping ensure our nation’s energy security and independence.”
Senator Manchin added, “Today’s groundbreaking is a direct result of the Inflation Reduction Act, and this type of investment, in a community that has felt the impact of the downturn in American manufacturing, is an example of the IRA bill working as we intended. The people of Weirton’sunbeatable work ethic, our strong community college workforce programs, and the infrastructure already in place, along with incentives we included in the Inflation Reduction Act, have all come together to ensure that Weirton and all of West Virginia will continue to use our natural resources — coal and gas that we can produce cleaner than anywhere else in the world — as we invest in advanced energy technologies of the future. Today, we have proven that competitive investments that drive innovation, not elimination, are the keys to a thriving, energy independent nation.”
Form Energy is partnering with the State of West Virginia to build Form Factory 1. The manufacturing facility represents a total direct investment of up to $760 million, with a financial incentive package from the State of West Virginiaworth approximately $290 million in asset-based, performance financing.
West Virginia Economic Development Secretary Mitch Carmichael, said, “It is wonderful to be here today with Form Energy at the site of the old Weirton Steel Mill and to honor the people and the history of this great steel community. I have had the pleasure of working closely with the Form Energy team and, personally, very proud that Weirton, West Virginia was selected as the location for their first iron-air battery manufacturing facility. This factory will build upon the legacy of the community and will continue West Virginia’sleadership in producing and providing the manpower to strengthen our American electrical grid. Today’s groundbreaking is an exciting and important step towards creating 750 new, good-paying manufacturing jobs and opens the door to economic revitalization in the Northern Panhandle.”
To learn more about Form Energy and stay up to date on the latest developments and job openings at Form Factory 1, please visit www.formenergy.com.