Governor Greg Abbott announced GRI Renewable Industries, the industrial wind division of Spanish-based Gonvarri Steel Industries, plans to build a new manufacturing plant in Amarillo, Texas. The plant, which will manufacture renewable wind energy components, is projected to create over 300 new jobs and $41 million in capital investment in the State of Texas. A Texas Enterprise Fund (TEF) grant offer of $1.85 million has been extended to GRI.
“As Governor, I am committed to making Texas the national leader in attracting foreign investment, and GRI’s decision to locate their latest manufacturing plant in the Lone Star State continues Texas’ streak of attracting job creators,” said Governor Greg Abbott. “Texas competed with multiple states to become home to this facility, and I am proud of our efforts to close this deal and inject hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars into our economy.”
“With this new factory in the US market, GRI will utilize its experience and know-how as a leading global supplier of wind towers,” according to Javier Imaz, CEO of GRI. “We initially considered locations in several states as a part of our business strategy to serve the US wind industry. Our decision to select Amarillo included key factors such as the pro-business environment in the state of Texas, Amarillo’s favorable geographical location and good workforce as well as a package of state and local incentives.”
The Amarillo Economic Development Corporation (EDC) partnered with the Office of the Governor to facilitate state and local support for GRI’s new manufacturing facility in Amarillo.
“The Amarillo EDC is extremely excited to have secured this investment through a very rigorous site selection process with competition from New Mexico, Oklahoma and Kansas,” said John Kritser, Amarillo EDC Board Chairman. “GRI and its family of products supports the Amarillo EDC’s mission to expand our local economy and provide sustainable employment to Amarillo citizens.”
GRI’s Amarillo facility will begin construction this year and is expected to be fully operational by the end of 2016. The plant will provide utility scale wind towers to wind energy facilities. The TEF offer is contingent upon final execution of the contract between TEF and Gestamp and upon Gestamp meeting jobs and capital investment projections, as well as the receipt of offered local incentives.
GRI Renewable Industries (www.gri.com.es) was formed in 2008 and is the industrial wind division of Gonvarri Steel Industries. It currently has 10 manufacturing plants in Spain, Brazil, China, Turkey, India and South Africa that manufacture and supply wind towers and flanges to the wind energy industry worldwide. GRI Renewable industries ended the 2014 fiscal year with manufacturing capacity of approximately 1500 towers and about 3,000 employees.
The Texas Legislature created the TEF in 2003 and reauthorized funding in 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2013 to help attract new companies to Texas and expand existing businesses to create more jobs throughout the State. TEF projects must be approved by the governor, lieutenant governor and speaker of the House. The fund has since become one of the state’s most competitive economic development tools.