New GA solar module plant to create 350 jobs

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German solar panel manufacturer to set up shop in GeorgiaMage Solar (MAGE), a German solar manufacturer, announced today that it will open an assembly plant in Dublin, Ga.

The company has been importing several megawatts of solar panels to the United States for a few years, according to the press release it issued. Spire Corporation (SPIR), based in Massachusetts, has contracted to build the new manufacturing plant.

Roger Little, Spire chairman and CEO, said the new facility is expected to allow Mage to produce about 50 megawatts of American-made solar modules per year.

“The manufacturing line that we are providing allows them to better control pricing for increased market penetration especially by adding significant 'Made in the USA' value,” Little said. “Their factory will be able to provide up to 350 American jobs over five years.”

He said the plant should be able to bring on about 50 new employees in the first year and grow from there.

Mage decided to locate in Georgia because of some tax incentives the state offered, Little said.

Along with this new company establishing a U.S. presence, several other companies, particularly some of the biggest ones that got their starts in California and the Pacific Northwest, have started expanding into the Midwest and Southern states, where their manufacturing dollars will stretch farther.

Mage Solar will establish Dublin, Ga., as its North American headquarters, according to the press release. The company will use the new base to establish and grow its business in the U.S., which industry experts expect to be the biggest growth market in the world for the solar industry in coming years.

“We are extremely excited about the launch of the production line at our North American headquarters in Dublin, Ga.,” Mage CEO Norbert Phillip was quoted in the release.

The company’s first high-quality Powertec modules are expected to come off the new assembly line as early as this April, according to the release.

The Mage facility in Georgia is just one among hundreds that Spire has built around the world, Little said.

The company typically creates solar module manufacturing facilities designed to produce about 50 megawatts a year, which makes the Georgia plant pretty standard, Little said.

But the company does not build any other type of manufacturing facilities. It is 100 percent dedicated to creating solar facilities—facilities that then generate new jobs in the green economy.

Business has been growing along with the solar industry, Little said.