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Anheuser-Busch talks about major expansion at can manufacturing plant

May 27, 2015 in Hot Business Tips, In the news by admin

Anheuser-Busch talks about major expansion at can manufacturing plant

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Anheuser-Busch is considering a major expansion in Jacksonville. It’s promising to spend $170 million and hire 75 new employees at an average salary of $75,000 a year.

A subsidiary of Anheuser-Busch is considering a major expansion of its Westside can manufacturing plant in Jacksonville. Metal Container Corp. is promising to spend $170 million and hire 75 new employees at an average salary of $75,000 a year.

The proposed incentive package from the city is up to $12,045,000, according to legislation being filed with the Jacksonville City Council.

Almost all of that, up to $12 million, is in the form of relief from 75 percent of the additional property taxes that the project would generate for 12 years after completion. That only applies to city taxes. School district and other taxes would still be paid in full.

The other $45,000 would be the city’s $600 per-job share of a Qualified Target Industry Grant.

The state has proposed to give $2.8 million in grants.

The company’s $170 million investment would consist of $40 million in real estate improvements and $130 million in manufacturing equipment.

Ted Carter, executive director of the city’s Office of Economic Development, said he could not say exactly what the expansion would be for. That would be for the company to announce, he said.

In December, the company broke ground near St. Louis on a $150 million expansion to increase its aluminum bottle production.

Two other sites in the Southeast are also competing for the project with aggressive offers, the city’s proposal said, but it did not name them. Metal Container Corp. has other can plants in Arnold, Mo., Mira Loma, Calif., Newburgh, N.Y. and Windsor, Colo., and lid-makers in Oklahoma City and Riverside, Calif.

Carter said the company could be considering new locations as well.

But a statement from Pete Kraemer, Anheuser-Busch’s vice president of supply, shed no light:

“We are currently evaluating multiple locations for a potential project, including two sites at our current operations in the Jacksonville area. The project is in the early stages. … The location selection will not impact the viability of our existing breweries and can plant operations.”

Carter said the city has put an emphasis on manufacturing jobs. Three weeks ago, Johnson & Johnson Vision Care announced it’s considering a $300 million, 100 employee expansion of its contact lens plant in Jacksonville. It is seeking close to $98 million in city and state tax relief.

Anheuser-Busch has more than 700 employees in Jacksonville, including 163 at its can manufacturing plant on North Ellis Road with the rest at its brewery in North Jacksonville. The company has promised to retain those 163 jobs.

The Jacksonville brewery opened in 1967 and is one of 12 of the beer giant’s breweries in the country.

Belgian brewer InBev bought Anheuser-Busch in 2008 for $52 billion and the resulting company, called Anheuser-Busch InBev, became the world’s largest brewer.

Metal Container Corp. produces more than 45 percent of Anheuser-Busch’s cans and 55 percent of its lids. The Jacksonville facility also makes caps for PepsiCo.

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