Electric vehicle maker Canoo bets big on Oklahoma and Northwest Arkansas

It turns out that a factory in Pryor was just the start of electric vehicle maker Canoo’s investment in Oklahoma.

The company recently announced that it will bring research and development and software development centers to Tulsa, requiring around 375 workers. Canoo also plans to open a customer service and financing center in Oklahoma City and several new facilities in Northwest Arkansas, including the Bentonville headquarters.

In a call with investors last week, Canoo chief executive officer Tony Aquila said the move would force Canoo to build its own cars sooner than a contract manufacturer in Europe can produce them.

“We are now in a position to accelerate our state-of-the-art manufacturing industrialization facility in the US ahead of VDL Nedcar, meeting the growing demand for LV and LV delivery, which will avoid a 25% tariff on imported vans in the United States, which puts us ahead of schedule, ”said Aquila.

The LV is Canoo’s lifestyle vehicle model.

Canoo also announced a partnership with the George Kaiser Family Foundation to develop local skills needed for new jobs and attract diverse talent to Northeast Oklahoma.

“We are delighted to have Canoo’s software engineering and technology centers in Tulsa. The presence of these high-quality jobs from Canoo can benefit and complement the various Tulsa-based public-private programs supported by GKFF and specializing in areas such as automotive and software engineering, cybersecurity, advanced mobility, among others. “GKFF Executive Director Ken Levit said in a statement.

Aquila praised governments. Kevin Stitt and Asa Hutchinson for being pro-business and said the expansion in the two states includes about $ 100 million in additional incentives, likely in the form of government orders for electric vehicles.

“They want to create high tech jobs, they want to create this as a new industry in the hallway. And so, they’ve been extremely helpful. And, you know, obviously we’re still conservative, but we’re going to focus on them. holdings in final agreements, ”Aquila said.

Oklahoma has reportedly offered Canoo a $ 300 million incentive program for its MidAmerica Industrial Park plant in Pryor, including land and site development.

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