Empire State Development Announces Support For New Battery Pilot Manufacturing Facility At Eastman Business Park

Expanded facilities at EBP will support pilot manufacturing center partnership between Kodak and NY-BEST

Investment Complements “Finger Lakes Forward” – Region’s Successful Upstate Revitalization Initiative Blueprint to Grow the Economy and Create New Opportunities

Empire State Development (ESD) today announced that Eastman Kodak Company, in partnership with New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium, Inc. (NY-BEST) will install two multi-user battery cell assembly lines at their Eastman Business Park (EBP) site in Rochester. The site will serve battery and capacitor development and production companies.  The new lines will complement existing roll-to-roll (R2R) coating capability and expertise at Kodak; a battery assembly prototype lab at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT); and the BEST Test and Commercialization Center, a battery cell commercialization and testing center in the same building at EBP. This combination of capabilities expands the energy ecosystem and creates a world-class tool-set for the development and production of new battery and capacitor technologies.

The battery cell assembly facility, which will be operated by Kodak in partnership with NY-BEST, will utilize equipment supplied by Kodak. This includes a dry room and specialized manufacturing equipment, such as cutting, winding, stacking, welding, filling, formation and packaging machines to make batteries, ultra-capacitors and other energy storage devices.

Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, “We are proud to reinforce our commitment to NY-BEST and the energy storage innovation hub it is creating with Kodak at Eastman Business Park. These facilities provide needed resources to companies, researchers, and entrepreneurs who are working to advance the battery industry. Under Governor Cuomo’s leadership, New York State is establishing itself as a world leader when it comes to this burgeoning industry.”

ESD has offered incentives for the project through an Upstate Revitalization Initiative capital grant valued at $1.2 million. The project will create nine direct jobs by 2019 while expanding pilot manufacturing capabilities at EBP, which will enable commercial market entry for new products, helping to attract more new business to the 1,200-acre campus in Rochester.

Eastman Business Park President Dolores Kruchten said, “With this new cell assembly center, Rochester becomes a national hub for battery innovation and production.  At the same time, it expands the applications for Kodak coated films – we are pleased that our expertise and equipment in roll to roll manufacturing is now being leveraged to support new energy storage technologies that are changing the world.  Making battery electrodes is just one application.  Others include security films, electronic films, medical films and optical films.  Kodak’s capabilities, in conjunction with those of others, built in Eastman Business Park, have allowed the creation of energy storage ecosystem to facilitate research, development and production all in one location.”

NY-BEST Executive Director William Acker said, “NY-BEST is grateful to Governor Cuomo, Empire State Development and the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council for their support of the energy storage industry and our efforts to establish a world-class energy storage product development and manufacturing hub here in New York State. Together with our partners at Kodak, RIT and DNV GL, the facilities we have created here in Rochester, along with the State’s rich network of research, manufacturing and intellectual assets, have combined to put New York State on the global map as a great place for energy storage companies to locate and grow their businesses.”

Growing a comprehensive battery and energy storage hub in the region remains a top priority of the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council and the Finger Lakes Forward strategic economic plan.

Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Co-Chairs Wegmans Food Markets CEO Danny Wegman and Monroe Community College President Anne Kress said, “The Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council is pleased to continue our support for these specialized efforts which are translating into next generation scientific discoveries. By supporting this project, we harness the expertise of both private and research companies as well as universities who are busy working to create the next generation of innovative products, which in turn drives economic activity and creates jobs in the Greater Rochester area.”

Assembly Majority Leader Joseph D. Morelle said, “This new manufacturing facility is yet another example of how Eastman Business Park is leading the charge in economic development and innovative technologies that will help Rochester thrive now and in future generations. I am grateful for the dedication of my colleagues on the Regional Economic Development Council and our government partners whose support and investment has made this project a reality.

State Senator Joe Robach said, “The addition of two multi-user battery cell assembly lines for Eastman Kodak and NY-BEST is great news for Eastman Business Park, the Rochester region and the continued improvement of our local economy. Eastman Business Park continues to re-invent itself in to a national research and innovation hub, attracting new businesses and creating new jobs for our workforce. This investment by NY-BEST will help fortify Eastman Business Park’s future in our economy.”

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren said, “Kodak and Eastman Business Park are once again becoming drivers of jobs, technology and innovation in Rochester. Today’s announcement of the new battery pilot manufacturing facility is further proof that Rochester’s future is as bright as it’s past. I would like to thank our partners in state government for their commitment to our region and for their belief that we can create more jobs, safer and more vibrant neighborhoods and better educational opportunities in all corners of Rochester.”

Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo said, "Eastman Business Park continues to attract new opportunities which benefit our community's workforce and reputation as a hub for innovation. I look forward to the success of this industry right here in Monroe County."

The new battery pilot manufacturing facility is expected to be open by July 2017.

  This latest project builds on the success story that is the rebirth of Eastman Business Park.  EBP, the site where Kodak began manufacturing photographic film and paper more than a century ago, has been repurposed to aid with reinvigorating the region.  Today, the campus supports over 95 companies, employing over 6,000 people. Besides Kodak and NY-BEST, businesses such as ON Semiconductor, SiGNa Chemistry, Harris, Carestream and LiDestri Food and Drink call EBP home.

NY-BEST is a rapidly growing, industry-led, private-public coalition of corporate, entrepreneurial, academic, and government partners building a vibrant, world-class advanced battery and energy storage sector, from R&D to commercialization, in New York State. Members include Fortune 500 companies, start-ups, universities, national research centers and laboratories spanning all facets of the energy sector.

For more information about Kodak click here:

For more information about New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium, Inc. click here.

Accelerating Finger Lakes Forward 

Today’s announcement complements “Finger Lakes Forward,” the region’s comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. The State has already invested more than $3.4 billion in the region since 2012 to lay the groundwork for the plan – investing in key industries including photonics, agriculture‎ and food production, and advanced manufacturing. Today, unemployment is down to the lowest levels since before the Great Recession; personal and corporate income taxes are down; and businesses are choosing places like Rochester, Batavia and Canandaigua as a destination to grow and invest in. Now, the region is accelerating Finger Lakes Forward with a $500 million State investment through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, announced by Governor Cuomo in December 2015. The State’s $500 million investment will incentivize private business to invest well over $2.5 billion – and the region’s plan, as submitted, projects up to 8,200 new jobs. More information is available here.​

About Empire State Development

Empire State Development is New York’s chief economic development agency. The mission of ESD is to promote a vigorous and growing economy, encourage the creation of new job and economic opportunities, increase revenues to the State and its municipalities, and achieve stable and diversified local economies. Through the use of loans, grants, tax credits, and other forms of financial assistance, ESD strives to enhance private business investment and growth to spur job creation and support prosperous communities across New York State. ESD is also the primary administrative agency overseeing Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Councils and the marketing of “I Love NY,” the State’s iconic tourism brand. For more information on Regional Councils and Empire State Development, visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov and www.esd.ny.gov.


Shari Voorhees-Vincent | [email protected] | (585) 399-7055

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