Hyundai to open $20 million research studio at Montana State University in Bozeman

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Stephanie Gray, Dean of Gallatin College; Abraham Kim, executive director of the Council of Korean Americans; Todd O’Hair, president and CEO of the Montana Chamber of Commerce; John Robb, CEO of Hyundai America Technical Center, Inc.; Governor Greg Gianforte; John Suh, Founding Director of New Horizons Studio, Hyundai Motor Group; Scott Osterman, director of the commerce department; Jason Carter, vice president of economic development at Montana State University; Mark Sharpe, Director of Campus Innovation, MSU; Dick Harte, Chairman of the Board of Innovation Campus, MSU

Hyundai Motor Group announced Thursday the opening of its new research and development headquarters in Bozeman.

The New Horizons Studio will be located at Montana State University and represents a $20 million investment from Hyundai as well as 50 new jobs over a five-year period. The studio will be located on MSU’s Innovation Campus and is estimated to be between 12,000 and 15,000 square feet.

The Bozeman location is the third New Horizon studio the company has opened across the country with its main office in Silicon Valley and another research and development office in Boston.

The studio is focused on researching the development of “ultimate mobility vehicles” that can “cross off-road terrain with unprecedented mobility, thanks to a combination of robotics and wheeled locomotion technology,” according to the website. of the society.

John Suh, director of New Horizons Studio and vice president of Hyundai Motor Group, said the researched vehicles could be used for everything from course management to exploring alien terrain.

“New Horizon Studio’s mission is to develop a new type of vehicle for future customers who want or need to travel in difficult or difficult terrain for conventional vehicles,” he said. “What makes it new is a combination of robotics and automotive design, and that results in vehicles of unprecedented mobility…that’s why they call them ultimate mobility vehicles.”

By operating on the MSU campus, Hyundai will have the opportunity to work closely with undergraduate and graduate students, researchers and professors on campus, including Jason Carter, Vice President of Research, Economic Development and Higher Education from MSU, said he was excited.

“Here at Montana State, we have world-class faculty, world-class researchers, and world-class students. They are hard-working, innovative and eager people, ready to join forces with industry partners on the toughest issues of our time,” he said.

Governor Greg Gianforte, who joined Suh and other MSU stakeholders in welcoming Hyundai to Montana at a campus press conference Thursday morning, said the company’s coming to Montana was part of his plan to bring more business to the state.

“The availability of labor is essential to the growth of the company. And that’s why the state and our university system are working with individual businesses and key industries to create employer- and industry-specific labor pipelines. And I’m thrilled that this lab is an epicenter of public-private partnerships to help achieve those goals,” said Gianforte, a Republican. “As we welcome Hyundai’s job creation facility to Montana, please know that we are committed to continuing to foster an environment where businesses and our employees can thrive, grow and thrive.”

Growth is putting pressure on housing affordability throughout Montana, and recent survey results indicate that housing is a significant concern in the state. In Bozeman, the median cost of a single-family residence is $905,000 and rising, and a city official recently told lawmakers that businesses are struggling to attract and retain talent.

At the event Thursday, Montana Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Todd O’Hair echoed Gianforte’s message on the Hyundai deal as a victory for the state.

“I think it’s important that you recognize the significance of this announcement to the state of Montana. Hyundai is a respected global company with a recognizable brand name and has chosen Bozeman, Montana for its next venture,” he said. “We must not underestimate the power that presents itself and the opportunity that presents itself in Montana and especially in Bozeman.”

At the press conference, Gianforte touted the multiple tax initiatives his administration has introduced as a way to expand business in Montana, but Suh said the decision to come to Montana was not based on financial relief. , but rather on the general attitude of all stakeholders.

“The collaboration between state government, local government, Montana State University, and this community is evolving together and collaboratively…and in the long run, I think that’s the most important thing,” Suh ​​said. .

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