Schneider Electric smart factory hosts Secretary Granholm, Governor Beshear

March 11, 2022

Schneider Electric hosted U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm and the Governor of Kentucky Andy Beshear for a tour of its Lexington, Kentucky, smart factory March 3. The Secretary and Governor were led on the tour of the 500,000-square-foot facility by Aamir Paul, U.S. Country President, Schneider Electric, who briefed the officials on the facility’s state-of the-art technology that is saving 26 percent of the energy it once used and reducing carbon emissions by 78 percent through digital modernization upgrades. Schneider executives also briefed the Secretary and Governor on the company’s recent efforts to onshore manufacturing to address supply chain challenges.

The manufacturing plant currently employs about 620 workers and was originally constructed in 1958. Through recent digital innovations it has earned the distinction by the World Economic Forum as an Advanced Lighthouse Facility for its sustainability, productivity, agility, customization and speed-to-market capabilities. The Kentucky plant was also recognized by the World Economic Forum as a Sustainability Lighthouse for its efficiency and sustainability. Following the tour, Secretary Granholm, Governor Beshear and Schneider Electric officials joined a roundtable discussion with business leaders who highlighted the impacts of clean energy investments and developing a more competitive, digital workforce of the future for a growing global clean energy economy.

“The important message I heard today is people are excited about the building out of the supply chains for manufacturing in the United States,” Granholm said. “I’m glad to be here because it’s not just about the product itself, but it’s how the product is made and how using smart technology to be efficient in the process which is another aspect of being made in America.”

Beshear added: “Our future is optimistic and bright as we're seeing more investment and more jobs in the state. These are new jobs, jobs of the future and green jobs. We're making sure we can build American in a responsible way, and we have an opportunity to be leaders and not followers. We're excited about where we are going.”

Paul added: “Schneider Electric was honored to host Secretary Granholm and Governor Beshear at our Lexington smart factory, which is an outstanding model for the future of manufacturing in the United States and the world. The digital upgrades made to this facility can be replicated across the country to create jobs, enhance efficiency and productivity, and reduce emissions. As our nation continues to address supply chain challenges, we look forward to our continued work with state and federal officials to onshore manufacturing and enhance facility productivity through digital innovation to meet market demand.”

Schneider Electric has a substantial manufacturing footprint in the United States with more than 17,000 employees nationwide. The Lexington Smart Factory has 620 employees who serve a role in the manufacturing of electrical components key to the Electricity 4.0 transformation.

Schneider Electric recently announced plans to increase its domestic manufacturing capabilities, including the construction of a new manufacturing plant in El Paso, Texas, this year, which will create 400 new American jobs and address supply chain challenges. The announcement follows substantial investments in existing Schneider-owned manufacturing operations in Iowa, Kentucky, Nebraska, and Texas to strengthen resilience, increase flexibility, and safeguard Schneider Electric’s U.S. supply chain--an effort accompanied by 130 American jobs.

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