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Schneider invests $40M in U.S. manufacturing

Dec. 21, 2020

"By modernizing and localizing our operations, we can better serve our customers and minimize the risk of interruption when we face challenges of global economic changes." Anette Clayton, CEO of Schneider Electric North America, discussed the steps the company is taking to become more resilient and "antifragile," that is, increasing ability in response to stressors.

To kick off Schneider Electric’s Innovation Summit North America 2020 on Nov. 10, the company announced a $40 million investment to modernize its facilities across the United States and bring new production lines to the United States. As businesses continue to recover from the impact of COVID-19, this is part of Schneider Electric’s larger initiative to increase resilience and safeguard its supply chain by moving critical solution production to the United States. In addition to new software and facility upgrades, this investment will further strengthen its workforce by introducing new digital training and upskilling opportunities, and adding 130 new jobs.

COVID-19 placed a spotlight on the critical vulnerabilities global manufacturing and supply chains can face during unprecedented disruption. This additional stake in the United States is part of a larger, strategic approach to strengthen resilience, increase flexibility and safeguard its supply chain. The initiative will provide Schneider Electric with greater control of its production processes that will help it deliver quality products and services to its customers, while introducing new learning opportunities to the workforce.

“This investment demonstrates our continued commitment to both our customers and our employees, while setting the foundation for the future,” said Annette Clayton, CEO and president, Schneider Electric North America. “We now have the technology and resources available to expand and efficiently produce more locally. By modernizing and localizing our operations, we can better serve our customers and minimize the risk of interruption when we face the challenges of global economic changes.”

For example, Schneider Electric’s smart factory in Lexington, Ky., recently earned the distinction of 4th Industrial Revolution (4IR) Advanced Lighthouse from the World Economic Forum, becoming the third of its factories to receive this honor. The factory was recognized for its success in adopting Industry 4.0 technologies at scale with demonstrated benefits around energy efficiency, sustainability and overall cost savings, while offering increasing agility and resilience in operations.

As U.S.-based companies increasingly look to reshore more of their manufacturing operations, the industry is creating more jobs that will require a new wave of a skilled workforce to fill them. In Schneider Electric’s case, the company has hired and pledges to hire 130 new employees through early 2021. As part of this investment, Schneider Electric employees will receive more digital training opportunities and tools that will enable them to adopt new skill sets and work more efficiently in a modern setting.