Ford Ontario: Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) announced plans to invest C$700 million (US$685 million) in its assembly plant located in Oakville, Ontario. The company seeks to bolster manufacturing operations, in response to the rising vehicle demand from the North American market. A company spokesman explained that construction has already begun at the facility that is set to be completed in 2014.
According to Joe Hinrichs, the firm’s president of The Americas, “This investment is helping us find much needed capacity for global products and securing jobs, and it is positioning Oakville as one of the most competitive and important facilities in the Ford system”. In line with public statements, the project would secure over 2,800 new jobs at the facility.
Additionally, spending on Canadian-made auto parts is expected to increase from C$200 million to nearly C$4 billion a year. And, as the company explained, the investment will bring “several new global models” to the facility. Currently, the Oakville plant manufactures the models Ford Edge, Ford Flex, Lincoln MKX and Lincoln MKT.
“The move to global manufacturing at the Oakville plant will enable Ford to shift production based on consumer demand more quickly and efficiently,” the firm said. The improvements will allow the facility to align capacity for nearly any vehicle, which is experiencing real demand for customers not only in North America, but globally. Since Ford utilizes nine global platforms for 85% of the cars it manufactures, the company benefits from the leverage the commonality of components, design and build, has to offer.
Much to the industry’s pleasing, low interest rates and improving unemployment rates, have seen U.S. and Canadian auto sales rise steadily. Ford’s sales, for example, were up by 12% year-over-year, allowing the firm to reach its best retail-sales month since August 2006. Through the investment at Oakville, the company intends to serve the rising regional demand for new vehicles. Check back for more updates on Ford Ontario.
Disclosure: Pablo Erbar holds no position in any stocks mentioned