CHICAGO Mitsui Mining & Smelting Co. Ltd. has formed Mitsui Kinzoku Catalysts America Inc. to manufacture and sell automobile catalysts in the United States.
Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear confirmed Aug. 19 that Tokyo-based Mitsui will invest $19.5 million to lease and equip a facility in Frankfort, Ky., with operations scheduled to start in July 2015. It is expected to create 50 full-time jobs.
Mitsui had been focused on expanding in such developing countries as India and Thailand. "However, demand for automobile production in North America is still stable so, in response to the growing demand for new technology in the United States, Mitsui Kinzoku has decided to further expand its business by establishing a local production and sales base," the company said.
Mitsui received economic incentives from the states Development Finance Authority.
Kentuckys auto industry employs nearly 80,000 people, according to the state, including 37,000 people at more than 150 Japanese-owned companies.