Lilly, Amazon pump billions into Indiana's industrial resurgence

Isis Almeida, Bloomberg News on

Published in Business News

An industrial renaissance is fueling record capital inflows into Indiana, putting the Midwestern state on pace to surpass last year’s almost $29 billion in investments.

Eli Lilly & Co. last week pledged to spend $5.3 billion in the state to expand a site that makes a key ingredient in the weight-loss and diabetes drugs that have exploded in popularity. The investment comes on the heels of an $11 billion announcement by Amazon Web Services, the state’s largest-ever capital commitment.

The companies aren’t alone. Toyota Motor Corp. is pouring $1.4 billion into the state for the assembly of a new electric vehicle, and Google is building a $2 billion data center in northeastern Indiana. The Hoosier State expects to lure at least $27 billion in committed capital investments by mid-year, with much more to go before the end of 2024, said Governor Eric Holcomb.

“Our reputation has become a state that offers low cost of doing business and living, access to high talent,” Holcomb said in an interview at the Indiana Global Economic Summit last week. “We talk about this unprecedented momentum, and smart investment chasing smart investments, being around other smart investments. That’s the flywheel effect that Indiana has created.”

President Joe Biden is pouring trillions of federal funds into the U.S. economy through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Inflation Reduction Act and the CHIPS and Science Act — all enacted since late 2021. The efforts to encourage local manufacturing, which can also curtail what the U.S. sees as China’s outsized influence in key sectors, is a focus of Biden’s reelection bid.

The second-term Republican governor and his state have been a major beneficiary, enticing advanced manufacturing businesses like biotechnology, aviation and renewable energy to the state. Investment is up from just $8.8 billion three years ago, and $5.6 billion at the height of the global pandemic in 2020, according to data from the Indiana Economic Development Corporation.


“If you rewind the tape, back in 2005 we had to get our financial house in order,” Holcomb said. “We were delaying payments to local governments, we were broke. So we got our financial house in order, and then we started to grow our economy.”

Tech hub

The governor is positioning Indiana as a hub for new technologies including life sciences, electric vehicles and renewable energy. The state has approached the U.S. energy, commerce and defense departments to secure federal grants “to the tune of billions, multiple billions” for everything from micro electronics to hydrogen and in biotech, Holcomb said.

“When we talk about manufacturing, we’re talking about advanced manufacturing,” he said. “We’re always looking at where the industry is going to be decades out.”


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