CT: Electric Boat to Invest $31M, Add 200 Jobs in Groton
4 Nov, 2014
Governor Dannel P. Malloy announced Connecticut-based General Dynamics Electric Boat, the world’s premier designer and builder of nuclear submarines, is expanding its facilities in Groton to meet increased hiring and industry demands. The state Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) will provide Electric Boat with a $10 million loan in support of the $31.5 million project. As part of its expansion, Electric Boat expects to add up to 200 new employees to its Connecticut workforce of 8,700.
“Our state’s defense product and parts manufacturing sector is becoming increasingly important to the Pentagon’s supply chain and, ultimately, our national defense strategy as illustrated by the growing number and value of contracts awarded to Connecticut-based industry leaders like Electric Boat over the past decade,” said Governor Malloy. “The important work being done at Electric Boat is not only critical to our nation’s security but also to our economy, involving subcontracts with hundreds of suppliers around the state and employing thousands of residents in southeastern Connecticut. With the help of our partners at Electric Boat, this expansion, and the hundreds of new, good-paying jobs with good benefits that come with it, will strengthen our efforts to position Connecticut for a manufacturing revolution based on a new era of innovation, investment and economic growth.”
In operation for over 100 years, Electric Boat is the U.S. Navy’s prime contractor for the design and construction of the U.S. Navy’s Virginia Class nuclear submarines, subcontracting with nearly 600 vendors across Connecticut that supply over $600 million worth of goods and services for this defense acquisition program. In April, the U.S. Navy awarded Electric Boat a contract valued at $17.6 billion for the construction and delivery of the next block (Block IV) of Virginia Class submarines.
“Today’s announcement supports the required facility expansion that will help Electric Boat affordably deliver submarines to the U.S. Navy,” said Electric Boat President Jeffrey S. Geiger. “The state’s investment will also enable Electric Boat to grow, and remain a successful business and significant contributor to the economic health of Southeastern Connecticut.”
Electric Boat’s expansion of its facilities is necessary to accommodate additional engineers, designers and other professionals that the company requires as it continues its contracted work related to the Virginia Class Program as well as the Ohio Replacement Program, the newest class of submarines.
“This announcement today is a great example of a public private partnership,” said Tony Sheridan, president and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut. “It is what government can and indeed should do for its citizens. Bringing together key parties to create jobs and as a result creating a positive economic outlook for the entire region. It is a win-win situation for all parties involved, Electric Boat, Pfizer with the reuse of one of their buildings the City of Groton and last but not least maintaining and creating quality jobs for the region and state.”
“This wise investment means jobs for Connecticut workers and affirms our state’s continued global leadership and dominance in the design and construction of the strongest and stealthiest weapons systems at sea today,” said U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal. “As a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, I look forward to continuing to work with Governor Malloy and Electric Boat to ensure that Connecticut continues its proud tradition of providing the world the most technologically-advanced vessels ever made.”
“Today’s announcement is yet another tangible sign of the growth at Electric Boat and southeastern Connecticut being driven by the Block IV submarine contract and increasing work on the Ohio replacement,” said U.S. Representative Joe Courtney. “With hundreds of job openings at Electric Boat and hundreds more added at the former Pfizer site in New London, Connecticut’s assistance to Electric Boat comes at a critical time and this modest investment will have a high impact for our region and for the state. Thank you to Governor Malloy, Commissioner Smith, and EB President Jeff Geiger for making this happen.”
DECD will provide Electric Boat with a loan of $10 million at an interest rate of 2 percent for a ten-year term. Electric Boat may be eligible for full loan forgiveness if it successfully fulfills its employment obligation of 8,900 total jobs within two years.
“This is the latest example of how we are partnering with industry leaders to strengthen sectors vital to our long-term economic growth,” said DECD Commissioner Catherine Smith. “When cutting-edge companies like Electric Boat make new investments of this magnitude in our state, they have ripple effects throughout the economy that are felt for years to come.”
As part of its plans to reinvest in improving its competitive advantage and expanding its presence in Connecticut, Electric Boat will purchase a parcel currently owned by Pfizer Corporation, including land and buildings located at 9 King’s Highway in Groton. A portion of the project will involve improvements to the former Pfizer property as well as upgrades to Electric Boat’s existing facilities and equipment located in Groton. Electric Boat is making these investments to prepare for a ramp-up in production and contract work which will have a statewide impact on economic activity and the hiring of employees in the Defense Product and Parts Manufacturing sector.