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Novolyte celebrates first year, adds jobs

Novolyte Technologies blew the candles out a little early to mark its first year in business, but the eagerness could be well understood: There was plenty to celebrate.

The manufacturer of products such as lithium battery electrolytes hired five people in Ohio (14 worldwide) in its first year, added $561,000 to the local payroll and plans to invest $750,000 at its Independence headquarters in 2010.

Spun off of from the chemical division of Ferro Corp., Novolyte consists of two business platforms: energy storage products (battery materials) and performance materials, says CEO Edward Frindt.

Among the uses for the performance materials are solvents and other specialty materials for pharmaceuticals, agricultural, coatings, inks and gas scrubbing. Frindt is also excited about the company's new green product line.

Those products are shaped at the Independence location, which doubles as a headquarters and a research/development facility.

Novolyte was awarded a $20.6-million grant from the Department of Energy and a $1.2-million Ohio Third Frontier Grant for the company's work on the "electrification of the auto industry."

"The company built its reputation on quality and service through custom manufacturing and established a loyal customer base by consistently meeting specific technical requirements," Frindt says.

Novolyte employes about 165 people, with 24 people in Independence, 90 at its Baton Rouge, La., facility and about another 50 at the company's plant in China.

"We have added 14 jobs in 2009, five in Ohio, during one of the worst recessions in several generations as we have continued to fund our growth plans," Frindt says.

Source: Edward Frindt, Novolyte
Writer: Colin McEwen

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