Ford, SK Innovation invest historic $5.8 billion in new Kentucky electric battery plants

By Dominic Manecke, Building Kentucky

Rendering of electric battery facility.

A new project from Ford Motor Company and SK Innovation is expected to be the single largest economic development project in the history of Kentucky.

Ford and SK will build two electric battery plants in the BlueOvalSK Battery Park in Hardin County. This announcement accelerates the automobile manufacturer’s move to electric vehicles, creating 5,000 high-quality, high-paying jobs and solidifying Kentucky’s position as a leader in the automotive industry.

New electric battery plants in Kentucky

BlueOvalSK will supply Ford’s North American assembly facilities with batteries to power the next generation of the auto giant’s electric vehicles. Production of advanced lithium-ion batteries will begin in 2025.

Both plants will be built on the 1,551-acre site near I-65 in Glendale, Kentucky and will generate 86 gigawatt-hours. Ford expects at least 40 percent of its global sales to be electric vehicles by 2030, and the batteries made in Kentucky will help power that transition. As a result, state officials forecast that the Bluegrass State will become the largest producer of electric automotive batteries in the United States.

“We thank Ford Motor Co. and SK Innovation for their investment in Team Kentucky. This is the single largest investment in the history of our state, and this project solidifies our leadership role in the future of the automotive manufacturing industry. It will transform our economy, creating a better Kentucky with more opportunities for our families for generations. Our economy is on fire – and now, it’s electric. Never again will we be thought of as a flyover state. Our time is now. Our future is now.”

– Gov. Andy Beshear

Major investment brings jobs, economic impact

The $5.8 billion investment is more than triple the former largest, single investment unveiled in Kentucky.

Moreover, the 5,000 newly created jobs, which reflects full-time positions at the plants and does not include construction, supplier or dealership jobs, is over twice as large as the previous record holder.

In addition to BlueOvalSK, the companies plan to build a $5.6 billion complex in southwest Tennessee that will employ nearly 6,000 people and support the production of the next generation of electric F-Series pickup trucks as well as batteries.

Together, the $11.4 billion projects will be the single largest manufacturing investment in Ford’s 118-year-history.

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