Bloom Energy in Delaware: A World-Class American Manufacturing Team

I’ve spent my whole career in automotive and powertrain manufacturing and components assembly. I was at Ford Motor Company for fourteen years and helped build the all-electric Nissan Leaf during my five years at Nissan North America.

When I first visited Newark shortly after I joined Bloom in 2013, it pained me to learn about the many jobs lost when Chrysler and GM closed plants and pulled out of the state.  I spent my formative years in a steel town, and over my career and my lifetime, I have seen the impact that recessions and negative economic changes have had on American manufacturing. These are moments I will never forget and never want to repeat.

As you can probably imagine, I was excited to get to work building a cutting-edge fuel cell manufacturing facility that would bring some of those manufacturing jobs back to Delaware.

Since we broke ground on the University of Delaware’s Star Campus, we’ve done just that: we built the Bloom Manufacturing Center Delaware, our center of manufacturing excellence, and we created hundreds of high quality, well-paying manufacturing jobs and have given back to the community in many meaningful ways.

Today, Bloom Energy is the world’s leading manufacturer of fuel cells.

It is unlikely we would have achieved that position were it not for the growing and disciplined world-class manufacturing team at our center in Newark. Throughout the past six years, they have delivered steady improvements in our American product and the processes necessary to build it.

When we opened the manufacturing center in Newark, Bloom was still a young company. We had only been selling our product for a few years in a brand new industry.   Predicting growth and demand in mature industries is extremely difficult, let alone in a new industry. We acknowledge that not everything has gone as expected with respect to the business climate and new energy policies which impacted our long-term forecast. Some expectations have been exceeded, and some have come in below target.  However, some critics have sought to misrepresent the positive impact that we have had on the local economy and community and I wanted to take a few minutes to set the record straight.

The Facts about Bloom Energy’s Economic Impact in Delaware

As you may know, we received a $12M grant from the Delaware Economic Development Office to help build the manufacturing center. Bloom itself invested $26M into building the center, and right from the get go, that money went back into the community, paying the hundreds of construction workers who built the facility.

Since then, we’ve paid more than $85M in wages to local people, my colleagues, who work in the plant.

Every day, they spend their wages in Delaware, and raise their families in Delaware and in neighboring communities.   I think if you asked any one of them about the good work being done at our world-class manufacturing facility, they would tell you what it means for their families as well as them as individuals.

Despite our progress, we haven’t created as many jobs as quickly as we thought we would in Newark. That’s why we paid back $1.5M of the grant money.  But we’re continuing to grow in Delaware. We’ve added 50 workers in the past six months, and we have many jobs open right now. We’d love for you to join us, and you can apply for the open positions here:

Bloom is proud to have created 21st century manufacturing jobs, rooted in the STEM competencies that are so vital to America’s continued leadership in innovation. We continually invest in Bloom employees to provide training to keep their skills at the leading edge. We provide a safe work environment, and provide full healthcare benefits

I believe our Delaware team’s focus on getting the job done while always striving to do better will be crucial to the long-term technical manufacturing revival that Delaware sought to prompt at the start of this decade. We are grateful for the confidence Delaware placed in us and confident in our future in the State.