FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) – Another new company is coming to Kentucky to serve the electric vehicle battery plant that will be built by Ford Motor Co. and SK Innovation at the Glendale Megasite in Hardin County.
Gov. Andy Beshear announced Thursday that LOTTE Aluminum Materials USA LLC will locate an aluminum foil manufacturing operation in Elizabethtown, a $238.7 million investment that will create 122 full-time jobs.
LOTTE Chemical, in a joint venture with LOTTE Aluminum, will build a manufacturing facility in Elizabethtown to produce 36,000 tons of cathode foil, a type of ultra-thin aluminum foil that is a core material used in EV batteries. Cathode foil is one of the four major components of lithium-ion batteries. It supports the cathode active material that determines the capacity and voltage of the secondary battery, and at the same time serves as a passage for electrons.
Company leaders anticipate demand for the material to increase by an average of 32% annually by 2030. The LOTTE operation, located on 40 acres in the T.J. Patterson Industrial Park, will be the company’s first aluminum foil facility in the U.S., and is expected to begin operation in 2025.
“I want to welcome LOTTE to Kentucky as we continue to see significant investment from EV-related businesses across the state,” Gov. Beshear said. “Further growth of this sector will require attraction of a broad range of suppliers, and this announcement by LOTTE signifies just that. We are building an ecosystem that will last for generations to come, and I am happy to announce this company will be a very important part of that vision.”
“We will do our best to develop and support technology so that we can stably produce high-quality and high-efficiency cathode foils to respond to customers one step at a time,” said Kim Gyo Hyun, president and CEO of LOTTE Chemical.
LOTTE Aluminum and LOTTE Chemical are subsidiaries of LOTTE Group, one of the largest conglomerates in South Korea, with over 90 business units employing more than 80,000 people. LOTTE Group, founded in 1967, serves a broad range of industries, including hospitality, financial services, food manufacturing, entertainment, industrial chemicals and aluminum manufacturing, among others.
In addition to the Ford project that creating 5,000 jobs in Hardin County, Envision AESC announced a $2 billion investment with 2,000 jobs in Warren County. Beshear says this solidifies Kentucky as the EV battery production capital of the United States.