Empire State Development Announces Novacab to Create 32 Jobs in Clinton County

Quebec-Based Energy Storage Manufacturer Expanding Operations, Establishing Footprint at Plattsburgh International Airport

March 28, 2019

Empire State Development (ESD) today announced that Smart Phases Inc. (DBA Novacab), a hybrid energy storage systems manufacturer headquartered near Montreal, Quebec, is expanding into Plattsburgh and plans to create 32 new jobs. The company's plans to establish operations at the Plattsburgh International Airport campus further the transformation of the airport into a modern transportation and economic development hub, and support the region's growing transportation cluster.

ESD President, CEO and Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, "Novacab's expansion reflects the state's strategic investments at Plattsburgh International Airport and builds on our economic development efforts to attract new jobs and new businesses to the North Country."

Novacab plans to invest $1.5 million to establish, equip and outfit a 30,000 square-foot manufacturing facility to produce hybrid thermal and electric energy storage units at the Plattsburgh International Airport. Once operational, the company plans to create at least 32 new full-time jobs. To support and encourage this project, ESD has agreed to provide up to $225,000 in performance-based Excelsior Jobs Program tax credits. Additionally, the New York Power Authority (NYPA) will provide 76 kilowatts of low-cost ReCharge NY power, and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) recently awarded Novacab a competitively selected contract to develop and demonstrate new energy storage technology that could be used with electric buses.

Novacab Founder and Chairman Stephane Bilodeau, Eng., Ph.D., FEC said, "This is an important milestone in the deployment of our innovative technologies in New York State and abroad. This achievement is the result of a huge endeavor done by our team with the help of many collaborators. Our gratitude and thanks to the Empire State Development team for participating together with NYSERDA and NYPA. Their help was key in the decision to go forward, and Novacab will now have a footprint in Plattsburgh, with the support of the North Country Chamber of Commerce, Clinton County, and the Plattsburgh International Airport."

NYPA President and CEO Gil C. Quiniones said, "The establishment of a new Novacab operation in Plattsburgh that is set to create 32 jobs is big news for the region. ReCharge NY is helping to make big impacts like this all across the state, with hundreds of thousands of jobs tied to the Governor’s low-cost power program."

NYSERDA President and CEO Alicia Barton said, "Advancing the adoption of new clean energy technologies, including energy storage, is critical to building the electric grid of the future and achieving Governor Cuomo’s nation-leading climate and clean energy goals. We congratulate Novacab on their new facility and welcome them to New York’s thriving clean energy ecosystem which already boasts more than 151,000 jobs and is outpacing statewide average employment growth."

Novacab was founded in 2007 in Quebec and produces thermal energy storage units primarily used in buildings and transportation, based on advanced research and development started in 1996. In 2017, the company began to extend the deployment of the technologies to hybrid energy storage systems, which generate electricity from heat and store it for future use. In buildings, Novacab's technology stores energy during off-peak hours when conditions are most-favorable, and discharges that energy during peak usage times to lessen the burden on the existing power grid. In transportation, Novacab's units allow commercial vehicles like long-haul trucks and tractor trailers to maintain electrical power for heating and cooling without the need to run the engine or a generator, reducing fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions.

The International Energy Association (IEA) estimates that to keep global warming below 2 degrees Celsius, the world needs 266 gigawatts of energy storage by 2030, up from 176.5 GW in 2017. Under current trends, Bloomberg New Energy Finance predicts the global energy storage market will hit that target and grow quickly to a cumulative 942 GW by 2040, representing $620 billion in investment over the next two decades, and the Smart Phases project is within this target.

North Country Chamber of Commerce President Garry Douglas said, "In our role as the marketing entity for Plattsburgh International Airport, we have been working with Novacab for two years now, encouraging their plans for a U.S. operation and demonstrating the advantages of Plattsburgh. The Governor's commitment of $38 million for a number of facility projects at the airport last year came at the right time as it allowed for work to be carried out on Building 2774 to bring it to leasable condition. Novacab represents another Quebec-based manufacturer using the North Country to grow in the U.S. market. It represents another advance in the continuing development of Plattsburgh International as an active, job creating industrial site. It represents the attraction of a green energy technology company to New York, and it represents our area's continued productive partnership with Governor Cuomo in building our international manufacturing base. Our thanks to Novacab for their confidence. Onward and upward!"

Senator Betty Little said, "This is great news and another great example of New York State government and the Plattsburgh region’s continuing success in forging public-private partnerships that attract investment and create new job opportunities for our area. The thermal storage technology will reduce pressure on the grid, help the environment and save money, making this announcement all the more exciting."

Assemblyman Billy Jones said, "Novacab’s decision to locate their new facility in Plattsburgh, once again demonstrates the strength of our region’s economy through cross-border trade coupled with skilled good-paying jobs. The North Country is dedicated to creating stable jobs in manufacturing, trade, and energy production, which will not only create opportunities for future generations to remain in the region, but will create a strong economy for the many hardworking families that call the North Country home."

Harry McManus, Clinton County Legislature Chair, said, "Our ability to lease this building would not have been possible without the grant and renovations at Building 2774. This is something that we’ve been planning for a long time, and the revenue from the lease will help defray some of the airport costs. We’re very pleased to welcome Novacab, which will strengthen our manufacturing sector and economic development efforts in Clinton County."

Plattsburgh Town Supervisor Michael Cashman said, "We continue to experience the benefits of the historic investment made by Governor Cuomo and New York State in the Plattsburgh International Airport campus. This new agreement between the Clinton County Legislature and Novacab is exciting as it brings another international business presence to our town and Greater Plattsburgh region. The addition of the new jobs is welcome, and we look forward to seeing them growing their presence."

About Empire State Development
Empire State Development (ESD) is New York’s chief economic development agency (www.esd.ny.gov). 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.


Adam Ostrowski | [email protected] | (518) 292-5148
ESD Press Office | [email protected] | (800) 260-7313