A $300 million shipyard expansion and improvement project, aided by $12 million in state tax credits through Wisconsin EDC, will enable Fincantieri Marinette Marine (FMM) to build a new generation of U.S. Navy frigates.
The firm and its Italian-based parent, Fincantieri, have undertaken the expansion and shipyard improvements in Marinette and Sturgeon Bay that will solidify the Wisconsin shipbuilder as a shipbuilding powerhouse.
“We are very grateful for the support provided by the State of Wisconsin,” said Mark Vandroff, CEO of FMM. “The investment made by the state and Fincantieri is enabling us to meet the needs of our Navy customer by being able to produce two Constellation class frigates per year.”
As part of the project, the firm constructed its largest building at the Marinette shipyard, which will allow the company to work on two of the ships simultaneously, year-round, in a climate-controlled facility.
The company won a Navy contract to build two guided-missile frigates, the first in the Constellation class, at a cost of $553.8 million each. As part of the contract, the Navy has an option to order eight more of the vessels, with a total potential contract value of about $5.5 billion.
“Wisconsin continues to be a global leader in manufacturing, and that’s in no small part thanks to the work and continuous efforts of Fincantieri Marinette Marine to develop some of the most innovative and advanced ships in the world to support our nation’s military,” said Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers.
As part of the project, Fincantieri announced plans to invest at least $100 million in improvements to the Marinette and Sturgeon Bay shipyards and create 400 jobs in the next three years. The amount of the state tax credits the firm will receive will hinge on meeting its capital expenditure, training and hiring goals.
“WEDC is proud to partner with FMM to help create 400 new jobs and train those workers to build the ships of tomorrow. FMM is already working with our state’s universities and technical colleges to help Wisconsin students find career success in their shipyards,” said Sam Rikkers, WEDC deputy secretary and chief operating officer.