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Johnson Controls-Saft To Build Hybrid Battery Plant

Joint venture plans to use an existing Johnson Controls facility located in Holland, Mich., to make lithium-ion hybrid batteries for cars, resulting in the creation of about 500 jobs.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- Johnson Controls-Saft said Tuesday it plans to establish a plant in Michigan to manufacture hybrid batteries for cars, resulting in the creation of about 500 jobs.

The joint venture plans to use an existing Johnson Controls facility located in Holland, Mich., to make lithium-ion hybrid batteries. Lithium-ion batteries are lighter-weight and more powerful than the nickel-metal hydride batteries currently used in hybrid vehicles.

The cost to renovate the Michigan facility will be roughly $220 million, the companies said. Johnson Controls-Saft will receive tax credits and other incentives from the state of Michigan totaling $148.5 million to help support the project.

Johnson Controls-Saft is a joint venture between auto parts maker Johnson Controls Inc. and battery producer Saft. The venture has agreements with companies, including Ford Motor Co., to supply lithium-ion hybrid batteries.

Shares of Johnson Controls rose 17 cents to close at $16.17.

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