Tesla and Panasonic will Produce Solar Cells in New York

Panasonic Corp. and Tesla Motors, Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) closed the deal to build photovoltaic cells and modules next year at a factory in Buffalo, New York. Under the deal, Panasonic will invest more than 30 billion yen ($260 million) in the Buffalo plant. The Japanese electronics company will pay for the capital cost for manufacturing while the U.S. electric car maker made a long-term purchase commitment to Panasonic, the companies said in a statement Tuesday. No financial figures were disclosed in the statement.

The final agreement came after Tesla revealed the plan in October to work with Panasonic to build solar cells. The two companies partnered to produce batteries for electric cars and energy storage units. The Buffalo plant is originally built by SolarCity Corp., a solar panel company that was acquired by Tesla last month for $2.6 billion.

“When production of the solar roof begins, Tesla will also incorporate Panasonic’s cells into the many kinds of solar glass tile roofs that Tesla will be manufacturing,” according to the statement.

The plant is expected to begin production in the summer of 2017. Tesla said it will create more than 1,400 jobs in Buffalo, including 500 manufacturing jobs. Tesla shares jumped 3.16 percent to $220 in the early trading in New York.

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