BOS Automotive Products Inc. is planning to invest $1.1 million and create 50 jobs to expand production at its plant in Rochester Hills.
The expansion will support a contract with Rivian Automotive Inc., which tapped the supplier to make a retractable, metal tonneau cover for its R1T electric truck, according to a briefing memo from the Michigan Economic Development Corp.
The state is supporting the project with a $225,000 performance-based grant. The city of Rochester Hills is pitching in by expediting plan review services and waiving fees. The MEDC said incentives were needed to lure BOS from Mexico and Illinois, where the company operates plants that could have accommodated the expansion.
The incentives also help offset the increased cost of doing business in Michigan as opposed to Mexico, the state said.
“The company is attracted to expanding in Michigan to be more responsive to the increased demand they are seeing from Rivian, cutting logistics costs by decreasing the distance to the OEM located in Illinois, and to target an increased customer base in the Northeast,” the briefing memo said.
Expansion will include additional production square footage, more dock access, a metrology lab and warehouse space. BOS and the state did not provide details about how much square footage is being added and when construction is expected to be complete.
“Today’s business expansion investments will help us continue growing Michigan’s economy, creating good-paying jobs, and building on our manufacturing strengths,” Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said in a statement.
The fully retractable, electric tonneau cover for the bed of the R1T is the EV maker’s first to market. Rivian rolled out the R1T, its first truck to market, last year.
Rivian welcomed media earlier this week to its production plant in Central Illinois, where CEO RJ Scaringe told reporters he’s optimistic about the company’s future even though the supply chain crunch is hurting business. Rivian expects to make about 25,000 vehicles this year, about half what it could do with a smooth supply chain, Scaringe said.
Rivian moved its base from metro Detroit to Irvine, Calif., two years ago, but still employs some 600 people in Plymouth.