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Solar panel manufacturer coming to Hub City

HATTIESBURG — Gov. Haley Barbour and officials from Stion, a venture-backed manufacturer of high-efficiency, low-cost thin film solar panels, announced yesterday the company is locating a 100-megawatt solar panel production facility in Hattiesburg.

The operations will be located in the Sunbeam building.

The production line is the first phase of a company investment of $500 million that will create 1,000 new jobs over the next six years, according to the Governor’s Office.

From its Hattiesburg location, Stion will utilize its proprietary material and process expertise to produce its high-efficiency, thin film solar panels. The 110W to 120W panels are designed for use in all major applications, including commercial/government, residential, utility and off-grid and offer significant cost and performance advantages over many competing products. The company will use approximately 300,000 square feet of the Hattiesburg facility to manufacture the solar panels.

The State of Mississippi is providing loan assistance totaling $75 million through the Mississippi Industry Incentive Financing Revolving Fund, pending approval by the Legislature. The state is also providing clean energy tax incentives and workforce training incentives for the project. Additionally, local officials provided tax and other financial incentives to assist with the project.

Founded in 2006, Stion currently produces its solar panels in its 100,000-square-foot manufacturing and research and development facility in San Jose, Calif., where the company is headquartered.

About Wally Northway

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