Heard It Through The Grapevine: Ford Motor Company And UAW-Ford Invest $6 Million In Motown Museum Expansion

In 1959 Berry Gordy started Motown Records in Detroit. He modeled his business, which became a global hit-making factory, after the Ford Motor Company assembly line.

Today, Ford and UAW-Ford are part of the Motown story again, announcing a $6 million investment as lead donor in a $50 million expansion of Motown Museum. The museum is the location of the famous Hitsville U.S.A. house and Studio A, where Motown Records changed the music industry forever.

"We are thrilled to play a role in the next chapter of a global music icon," said Joe Hinrichs, president, The Americas, Ford Motor Company, who will hold a leadership position as part of the museum's expansion efforts. "The enhanced museum will not only upgrade the visitor experience, it also fits with our commitment to investing in the cultural heritage of Detroit and southeast Michigan."

"It is very gratifying to support the expansion of the Motown Museum, and in doing so, we strengthen an institution that has great historical and cultural significance to our region and the world," said Jimmy Settles, vice president, UAW. "This partnership also allows us to continue our commitment to the Motown Museum's surrounding community, which is a community that many Detroit natives treasure."

As part of the Ford and UAW-Ford investment, the expanded Motown Museum will include:
  • Ford Motor Company Theater, a state-of-the-art performance venue
  • Educational, music and other programming tied to Ford's ongoing student and community outreach initiatives
  • CARaoke Experience, in which visitors take part in an interactive Ford-branded activity that incorporates music with Ford vehicles
  • Ford will be official vehicle of Motown Museum

"Motown and Ford Motor Company have wide and deeply connected roots," said Robin R. Terry, chairwoman and CEO, Motown Museum. "As two Detroit born brands, they have had -- and continue to have today -- a transformative and profound impact on creativity and innovation around the world.

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