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GE To Build Michigan Manufacturing Research Center

Fri, 06/26/2009 - 6:36am

BIRMINGHAM, Mich. (AP) — General Electric Co. said Friday it will build a $100 million manufacturing technology center in Michigan that will eventually employ more than 1,100 workers.

The Advanced Manufacturing and Software Technology Center will include a GE research and development facility with scientists and engineers who will develop manufacturing technologies for GE's renewable energy, aircraft engine, gas turbine and other products.

The center, which is expected to open later this year in Van Buren Township, Mich., also will work on software development, networking and other services.

GE, which is based in Fairfield, Conn., says it will build a 100,000-square-foot facility to house the manufacturing center. The state of Michigan is providing more than $60 million in incentives over the next 12 years to support the center.

Gov. Jennifer Granholm, appearing with GE CEO Jeff Immelt on the CNBC cable network Friday, said the new center will bring high-skilled jobs to Michigan, which has been reeling from the recession and the downturn in the auto industry.

"These aren't just any old jobs," Granholm said.

The research employees at the Michigan facility will join 2,800 researchers and employees at GE's four other research facilities. GE said it expects to establish partnerships with local universities on training programs for its employees at the center.

Shares of the company fell 9 cents to $11.76 in morning trading.

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