WAGGAMAN, La. — Today, Gov. Bobby Jindal – along with Dyno Nobel Americas President Daniel McAtee and Cornerstone Chemical CEO Greg Zoglio – announced the companies will invest a combined $1.025 billion for a new ammonia production facility and related upgrades in Waggaman. Incitec Pivot Ltd., the Australia-based parent company of Dyno Nobel, will invest $850 million to build the ammonia plant, providing a commercial foundation for Cornerstone to continue its planned investment of $175 million in maintenance, upgrades and infrastructure expansion at its site over a six-year period. The new Dyno Nobel plant will produce 800,000 metric tons of ammonia per year at Cornerstone Chemical’s Fortier Manufacturing Complex on the west bank of the Mississippi River in Jefferson Parish.
The project will create 65 new direct jobs by employing 60 new personnel at Cornerstone Chemical and another five employed at Dyno Nobel. LED estimates the project will result in another 477 new indirect jobs, for a total of more than 540 new jobs. Salaries for the new direct jobs will average more than $55,700 per year, plus benefits, and the project will retain 441 existing Cornerstone jobs. In addition, Dyno Nobel estimates construction employment will peak at 750 jobs over the three-year construction period.
Gov. Jindal said, “Dyno Nobel’s new ammonia facility in Jefferson Parish is proof of Louisiana’s outstanding business climate, top-notch workforce and first-class energy infrastructure – including our state’s affordable and abundant supply of natural gas. Louisiana is uniquely positioned to provide major supplies of natural gas to critically important energy and chemical manufacturers, and more and more companies are taking notice and investing right here in our state. But they’re not just coming here for our resources. Companies from around the globe are locating operations in Louisiana because they recognize we have a world-class workforce capable of getting results. We’re confident that this new facility will help us continue to build on our state’s energy and chemical manufacturing legacy, all while we move our economy forward by providing more great jobs for our people.”
Dyno Nobel will develop the anhydrous ammonia plant on a site where an ammonia plant previously operated before closing more than a decade ago. Cornerstone already produces acrylonitrile, melamine and sulfuric acid at the Waggaman complex, and the ammonia plant will be integrated with Cornerstone’s existing infrastructure.
“Incitec Pivot Limited and its U.S.-based operations, Dyno Nobel, are pleased to announce the construction of a world-class ammonia facility in Waggaman, Louisiana,” said Incitec Pivot Managing Director and CEO James Fazzino. “This plant will set a new standard in clean, efficient ammonia production and will provide a significant economic benefit to the state and regional communities. We are honored to be a part of the Waggaman, Jefferson Parish and Louisiana communities.”
Dyno Nobel will begin construction in the second quarter of 2013, with initial ammonia production beginning in mid- to late 2016. Hiring of plant management will take place in 2014, followed by additional hiring as the commissioning of the plant approaches in 2016.
“We are excited to welcome the investment by Incitec Pivot to Louisiana,” said Zoglio, the Cornerstone Chemical CEO. “The U.S. Gulf Coast economic model has changed due to the advent of advanced drilling and extraction techniques and the associated impact on natural gas pricing. Incitec Pivot’s foresight of this paradigm shift, coupled with the brownfield offering by Cornerstone Chemical Company and project support provided by the State of Louisiana, will allow the resurgence of world-class ammonia production in the state.”
“It is truly an exciting day for Jefferson Parish,” Parish President John Young said. “This is one of the largest economic projects to come to Jefferson Parish in recent years. I attribute the attraction of this global industry leader to the strong collaboration among local, regional and state organizations. This further confirms that Jefferson Parish’s West Bank is well-positioned to accommodate this type of investment, and demonstrates that Jefferson continues to attract, grow and create new jobs. We couldn’t be happier to welcome Dyno Nobel to our community.”
LED’s Business and Expansion Retention Group, or BERG, began discussing the project with Incitec Pivot Limited and Cornerstone Chemical Company in April 2011 and has been working closely on the project with JEDCO, the Jefferson Parish Economic Development Commission, and Greater New Orleans Inc., or GNO Inc. To secure the project, the state will offer a competitive incentives package that will include the Industrial Tax Exemption and Quality Jobs programs for Dyno Nobel. Cornerstone Chemical will receive a Modernization Tax Credit of $3 million, payable in five annual installments, along with the services of LED FastStart®, the nation’s top-ranked state workforce training program. Cornerstone Chemical also is expected to utilize the Industrial Tax Exemption and Quality Jobs programs.
“After an extensive and competitive international site selection process, we are thrilled to see this project come to fruition,” said JEDCO Executive Director Jerry Bologna. “In terms of capital investment, this represents the largest project this organization has ever had the pleasure to work on. This investment will be a tremendous boost to the economic development of Jefferson Parish and highlights the diversity of our industries.”
“Greater New Orleans Inc. is delighted to welcome the development of Dyno Nobel’s new ammonia production facility in Waggaman, which was made possible through a partnership with Cornerstone Chemical,” said Greater New Orleans Inc. President and CEO Michael Hecht. “This announcement proves again that Louisiana’s combination of unparalleled logistics, Top 10 business climate and affordable natural gas makes it an unbeatable location for large industrial projects.”
About Incitec Pivot
Incitec Pivot (ASX: IPL), an ASX Top 50 company, is a leading global company that manufactures, markets and distributes a range of industrial explosives, fertilizers, related products and services to customers around the world. A leader in its chosen markets, Incitec Pivot holds a portfolio of recognized and trusted brands and is the No. 1 supplier of fertilizers in Australia and the No. 1 supplier of industrial explosives, related products and services in North America. Employing approximately 5,000 people, Incitec Pivot owns and operates manufacturing plants in Australia, the U.S., Canada, Turkey, Mexico, Chile and Indonesia, and has joint venture operations in South Africa, Malaysia and China.
About Dyno Nobel
With headquarters in Salt Lake City, Dyno Nobel is the North American market leader in supplying industrial explosives and blasting services. The company adheres to safety standards among the highest in the commercial explosives industry. Dyno Nobel employs more than 3,000 people internationally and operates 10 manufacturing facilities. Dyno Nobel traces its roots back to the 19th century and the discovery by Alfred Nobel of nitroglycerin-based dynamite. Today, Dyno Nobel serves customers in the mining, quarry, construction, pipeline and geophysical exploration industries.
About Cornerstone Chemical Company
Cornerstone, based in Waggaman, La., is a leading manufacturer of key intermediate chemicals that are used in diverse industrial and consumer applications, including aerospace, automotive, water treatment, oil recovery, agriculture, plastics, furniture and flooring, and performance coatings. Cornerstone is the sole manufacturer of melamine in North America, a leading manufacturer of acrylonitrile in the U.S. and a top supplier of sulfuric acid in the Gulf region. Located on an 800-acre site just outside New Orleans, Cornerstone safely operates a world-class, highly synergistic manufacturing facility near the Mississippi River. Known for its high-quality products, Cornerstone is recognized worldwide for its reliability as a critical global supplier of intermediate chemicals.