Chief Executive

Six Lessons from CEO’s Huge Aluminum Gambit in Appalachia

By Dale Buss

The ongoing construction of a $1.6-billion aluminum-rolling mill in Ashland, Kentucky, ticketed with the economic hopes and dreams of an entire region, is about as big and bold as an entrepreneur can go. But there are lessons for other business leaders in how Craig Bouchard, CEO of Braidy Industries, has approached his attempt to build his fourth billion-dollar company.

When Braidy opens its mill in 2020, it’s expected to employ about 600 people who’ve been plucked from a pool of more than 7,000 applicants for jobs that Bouchard says will pay between $50,000 and $70,000 a year. Another 150 jobs are supposed to materialize in an associated metal-alloy plant nearby. And in the meantime, Bouchard expects to employ about 1,600 people doing construction.

This would go a long way toward reversing the devastating economic slide of a part of Appalachia that has lost not only many coal-mining jobs, but also thousands of manufacturing positions in the last couple of decades. Bouchard also expects his investment to help solve a deep-seated plague of opioid addiction in eastern Kentucky.

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Forbes

Auto OEMs Look To New Braidy Industries Mill In Kentucky To Ease Aluminum Shortage

Dale Buss

The auto industry’s challenge is Craig Bouchard’s opportunity. Orders for formed aluminum sheet products from his company’s new rolling mill in Ashland, Kentucky, through 2026 were already at 140 percent of output that’s expected when the $1.6 billion facility opens in 2020.

Then President Trump slapped tariffs on imported aluminum, and Bouchard said that purchasers’ subscription level now stands at 200 percent. “We got a hyper-boost from tariffs,” the CEO of Braidy Industries told me. “All of the car companies bought us. There’s already a shortage of aluminum in North America”  as OEMs push to “lightweight” their vehicles in every way possible. “This is going to be the first aluminum-rolling mill designed specifically for the auto industry.”

It’ll also be reportedly the first new aluminum mill in the United States in three decades. At the same time, Braidy will present automakers with a “dual sale” opportunity because, as Bouchard was putting together the Ashland complex, Braidy also acquired Veloxint, an MIT-incubated company that males ultra-high-strength alloys.

Besides coming up with timely supplies of aluminum for automakers, the Braidy mill will carry the economic hopes and dreams of an entire part of Appalachia. It’s expected to employ about 600 people who’ve been plucked from a pool of more than 7,000 applicants for jobs that Bouchard says will pay between $50,000 and $70,000 a year. Another 150 jobs are to be offered at the alloy plant. In the meantime, Bouchard expects to employ about 1,600 people during construction.

Read the full article at Forbes

Breitbart

Aluminum Mill to Bring 550 Jobs Back to Kentucky Town Crippled by Free Trade

by John Binder

The people of Ashland, Kentucky will see 550 high-paying jobs come back to their small community thanks to a new aluminum mill that is set to open in 2020.

Braidy Industries is opening a new aluminum mill in the northeast Kentucky region after President Trump implemented a ten percent tariff on imported aluminum to protect American industry and jobs.

The aluminum mill, known as Braidy Atlas, will employ about 550 workers and is set for its first production in a just a couple years, where it will be the world’s lowest cost aluminum plant, according to Kentucky Today. Already, Braidy Atlas executives say their first seven years of aluminum production are sold out.

Likewise, the Ashland aluminum mill will be the world’s most technologically advanced plant in the world and will have a production line that stretches 104 inches long. This will make it the widest aluminum mill in all of North America.

Read the full article at Breitbart

Forbes

Entrepreneurship & Unbelievable Bi-Partisanship: Making Aluminum Great Again In Ashland Kentucky

Moira Vetter, Contributor
Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.

Craig Bouchard, Chairman and CEO of Braidy Industries, is on a mission to make the lightest, strongest and most eco-friendly aluminum alloys in the world—at half the cost of competitors.

Bouchard saw the signs of a market swell several years ago when the auto industry began rapidly replacing steel with aluminum. To meet the corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standards, automakers have just a few more years to get their entire portfolio of autos and light trucks to 50 miles per gallon. Or what? Or they can’t make their cars and trucks anymore.

That’s a major market driver to support a business and investor case. But demand alone is not the stuff that makes the greatest entrepreneurial stories. The most successful business people go far beyond satisfying a market need or delivering strong financials, they find a way to make an exponential impact on the world. That is what Bouchard has set out to do in Ashland Kentucky…

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The Washington Post

Did Trump’s aluminum tariffs spark a $1.5 billion plant in Kentucky?

By Glenn Kessler, June 7, 2018


The president wants to shrink the trade deficit. The Fact Checker explains why a deficit isn’t all bad. (Meg Kelly/The Washington Post)

“Just last Friday, we had a plant, a groundbreaking in Ashland, Kentucky, the heart of poverty in America in Appalachia. $1.5 billion aluminum rolling mill because of the president’s tax and tariff policy.”
– White House aide Peter Navarro, interview on Fox News, June 4, 2018

 

“This is a story that’s truly remarkable and Donald J. Trump has brought in tax cuts, deregulation and trade policies that are working for the American working people. And guess what, on Friday they opened a $1.5 billion groundbreaking aluminum rolling mill in Ashland, Kentucky.”
– Navarro, interview on Fox News, June 3

The Trump administration, led by the president, is quick to claim credit for good news even if its policies may have had little to do with it. So our antenna went up when we saw Navarro, the White House director of trade and industrial policy, repeatedly attribute the building of a rolling aluminum plant in Kentucky to the president’s tariff and tax policies.

It takes time to build and plan a factory. But the president only announced tariffs of 25 percent for foreign-made steel and 10 percent for aluminum on March 1, so how is this possible?

Read the full article at the The Washington Post
 

CNBC

CNBC Interview About Proposed Tariffs

Braidy Industries CEO: Overall Tariffs Effect Very PositiveCEO Craig Bouchard lights up CNBC in an interview about proposed tariffs on aluminum imports. Watch him talk about the positive effects expected for our industry, our company, and jobs in America.

See Full Video at CNBC >

Business Wire

Braidy Industries Completes $75 Million Issue of Common Stock and Closes Acquisition of High-Technology Metals Company Veloxint

Braidy Industries, headquartered in Ashland, Kentucky, raised $75 million dollars in a common stock issuance at $10 per share

Veloxint, with its proprietary ultra-high-strength powder metallurgy technology, was acquired in a stock exchange for 100% of its outstanding equity, making Veloxint a wholly-owned subsidiary of Braidy Industries

Veloxint manufacturing will be co-located at the Braidy Industries EastPark site in Ashland, Kentucky

ASHLAND, Ky.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Less than one year after their announcement of plans to construct a $1.5 billion greenfield aluminum mill in Greenup County, Kentucky, Braidy Industries announces its successful completion of a $75 million Series B common stock issuance at $10 per share. Following the close of this financing, Braidy Industries finalized its acquisition of 100% of the outstanding equity of MIT-incubated ultra-high strength alloy and powder metallurgy provider, Veloxint.

“We are excited to officially bring Veloxint into the Braidy Industries family. This will enable the next step in fulfilling our original vision of transforming the metals industry using Veloxint’s proprietary materials design toolset to offer high-performance, cost-effective next-generation metal products.”

Craig T. Bouchard, Braidy Industries Chairman and CEO, said, “The close of our Veloxint acquisition places Braidy Industries in position to meet the demands and challenges of a transportation industry in need of cost-effective light-weighting. In the very near term, Veloxint will become the ‘lighter and stronger’ standard for transportation, mining, tools and consumer goods. This is a terrific win for Kentucky, and consistent with the goal of converting the Northeast corner of our beautiful state into the global intersection of science and advanced manufacturing.”

Read the Full PR at Business Wire

Kentucky Today

Lawmaker: Braidy Industries ‘Game-changer’ for Northeastern Kentucky

By MARK MAYNARD, Kentucky Today

ASHLAND, Ky. (KT) – House Democratic Floor Leader Rocky Adkins said even when northeastern Kentucky was experiencing frustrating economic years, lawmakers on both the state and local levels never stopped laying groundwork for the future.

EastPark Industrial Park was built near Interstate 64 along with a $50 million community technical college. Some critics, Adkins said, questioned the wisdom of the investment.

“Now,” he said, “EastPark’s dreams are coming true.”

Braidy Industries, which plans to build a $1.3 billion aluminum rolling mill that’s scheduled to be up and running in 2020, was the final piece of the puzzle.

The groundwork that had been laid in decades past is what made the region attractive to  Braidy Industries Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Craig Bouchard to make a long-term investment. Braidy’s corporate headquarters are in downtown Ashland, and Bouchard says that’s where they are staying.

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Kentucky Today

CEO of Braidy Industries: ‘We’re Going to Succeed’

By MARK MAYNARD, Kentucky Today

ASHLAND, Ky. (KT) – Craig Bouchard has only to look outside the window of his downtown office in this northeastern Kentucky city for motivation.

Ashland is a shell of what it used to be. But if Bouchard has his way, that will change.

Bouchard, chairman and CEO of Braidy Industries, is leading an ambitious initiative to build a $1.3 billion state-of-the-art aluminum rolling mill in an area that hasn’t had positive economic news in almost 30 years. In less than two months, Braidy plans to break ground on a greenfield rolling mill that is named after one of Bouchard’s six children.

For people in the northeastern Kentucky area, news of hundreds of high-paying jobs has restored hope.

“We chose here because of these families,” Bouchard said. “We’re taking on that job and I think we’re going to succeed. These people have been pushed around long enough. I feel the weight of these 10,000 families on my shoulders every day. This crowd in Ashland, they’ll do it.”

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Top 10 Local Stories of 2017

By Glenn Puit & Mike James The Daily Independent

It’s official — 2017 is in the books as of midnight tonight.

Looking back on the year it was most certainly a 12 months packed with interesting, intriguing and important local news. There were a bevy of new jobs created in the Tri-State. There were concerns about public safety documented at the Boyd County Detention Center. There were plans formulated and put into place to revive the city of Ashland’s downtown. And, there was the solidification of obstacles we as a region have yet to completely overcome. Today, then, is a day of reflection. It is a day to contemplate all that has come before us in the last 365 days for the purpose of gaining knowledge and learning. It is an endeavor of both contemplation and observation — an undertaking aimed at preparing us for the future to come.

With this in mind The Daily Independent brings you the Top 10 local stories of 2017.

#1 Braidy Industries

There is no doubt as to what the biggest story of 2017 is. It is simply put, the arrival of Braidy Industries.

On a beautiful April afternoon in Wurtland Gov. Matt Bevin called together a who’s who of economic development and community leaders to make the big announcement. Braidy Industries Chief Executive Officer Craig Bouchard, Bevin and others detailed for the anticipatory crowd on hand an ambitious plan by Braidy to construct a 2.5-million-square-foot facility atop 380 acres of riverfront property…

 

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