Reports says sometime in the months after the big announcement, the contract quietly fell through.
Robotic coffee kiosks are the latest known casualty of Foxconn Technology Group’s ever-changing plans for Wisconsin, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported Friday morning.
Foxconn and high-tech coffee company Briggo announced in September 2019 that Foxconn would be manufacturing Briggo coffee kiosks at its Mount Pleasant facility. But sometime in the eight months between the announcement and Coca-Cola’s May 2020 acquisition of Briggo, Foxconn and Briggo quietly parted ways, a Coca-Cola spokesperson told the Journal Sentinel.
The latest twist in Wisconsin’s Foxconn saga serves as yet another reminder of the company’s wavering commitment to its massive contract with the state. In its original 2017 agreement with Wisconsin, Foxconn—with former Gov. Scott Walker and former President Donald Trump as head cheerleaders—promised to deliver a sprawling, $10 billion LCD screen manufacturing campus that would have put southeastern Wisconsin on the map as a tech manufacturing hub and created 13,000 jobs.
But the megafactory never came. Instead, Foxconn constructed a factory one-twentieth the size of the original agreement, and that building is currently being used as storage, according to a state-authored report first uncovered by The Verge, a tech news site.
By the end of 2019, Foxconn had hired just 281 employees, or less than 15% of its contractual hiring target for that point in the project; state officials told Foxconn last October it won’t receive any of its multi-billion dollar tax subsidy package until it renegotiates its contract.
Last November, Bloomberg reported that Foxconn was tapped to build Google server components in Mount Pleasant. No further news has emerged of that deal.
A day before the Briggo news broke, Assembly Minority Leader Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh), during a virtual luncheon hosted by WisPolitics.com, thrashed the company’s parade of announcements that never materialized.
“The company seems to do this every three months, and then there’s another humiliating exposé of a warehouse with guys driving around in golf carts,” Hintz said. “I mean, it’s a joke.”