News/Blog

New Regional Workforce Study Released

The South Carolina I-77 Alliance is excited to announce the release of our new regional workforce study, a broad, in-depth look at the labor pool and demographic advantages available to companies considering initial or expanded investment in the five-county corridor between Columbia and Charlotte.

Regional Workforce Study
Download Workforce Study

The study —Regional Workforce Study for the SC I-77 Alliance — analyzes workforce data vital to site selection, including job-skills, commuting patterns, occupational structure, wages, worker demographics, and much more. In addition to the regional analysis, summaries were also created for our individual counties: Chester, Fairfield, Lancaster, Richland, and York. It also serves as an invaluable companion to our comprehensive Economic Data Center.

As with our first workforce study in 2017, TIP Strategies Inc. of Austin, TX was retained to conduct the research and interviews for this robust report. Working with third-party partners is important, as they bring objectivity, an outside perspective, and special expertise to the process.

The study itself reaffirmed the need for this update during a time of intense competition for qualified employees, as it details a region experiencing rapid growth, with advancements in training and work-readiness. Additionally, this latest version reflects the addition of Lancaster County to the Alliance region.

Data is knowledge and knowledge is power. Our new workforce study provides quantifiable, compelling proof of the corridor’s attractiveness to industrial recruitment.

Here are some highlights from the report:


Healthy Population Growth

The five-county region has experienced healthy population growth for the past 10 years — especially York and Lancaster counties — and is actually a net importer of labor, with 151,853 workers commuting into the corridor for work and 131,426 commuting to jobs outside the corridor.


Growth of the Civilian Labor Force

The civilian labor force in the five-county corridor grew from 359,000 to 396,200 from 2010 through 2017. That 10% increase is significantly higher than the South Carolina rate (7.3%) and the national rate (4.2%).


Two Growing Labor Sheds

Two Laborsheds

Operations locating or expanding anywhere in the I-77 region will have access to one of two labor sheds, each with a civilian labor force exceeding 1.2 million people, supported by the rapidly growing Charlotte, NC, and Columbia, SC, regions.


Educated Workforce

46% of the production and maintenance workers in the labor shed have post-secondary credentials or degrees, compared to the national average of 43%.


Lower Average Hourly Wage

The regional median hourly wage for almost all major occupational groups in the Corridor is at, or below the U.S. median.


Site selectors and companies want to identify markets with a young, dynamic workforce; however, data and analysis can’t represent the full picture. In addition to this quantitative research, TIP Strategies hosted roundtable sessions with local employers to discuss their experiences with the labor force and its strengths and weakness. These interviews provided a personal, qualitative dimension to their findings and analysis.

We’re pleased to present the new report; confident it contains the best data available for our region to successfully compete in the global economy for operations with the highest workforce standards.

Ty Davenport, Director of Fairfield County Economic Development
Ty Davenport, Director of Fairfield County Economic Development
Ty Davenport, Director of Fairfield County Economic Development, has a lead role in finding a buyer for the I-77 International Megasite.

Most of the infrastructure is now in place and marketing has begun for this 1,500-acre property just off I-77 about 20 miles north of Columbia and 60 miles south of Charlotte. The site plan calls for up to 9 million square feet under roof, perfect for an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) in the automotive or aerospace sector to bring an estimated 2,000 new jobs to the region.

The I-77 Megasite was acquired recently by Fairfield County in partnership with the South Carolina Department of Commerce. The SC I-77 Alliance will be working with Fairfield County and state officials to get the word out about the availability of a site unlike any other in the Southeast, one that Ty says will be a game changer for his county and the entire corridor once its occupied.

The Megasite has the potential to host a global player that provides stable, high-paying jobs and a host of affiliated suppliers that can transform the economy of an entire region. Think BMW in the Upstate, Volvo and Mercedes-Benz and Boeing in the Lowcountry. We can easily envision similar industrial, commercial and residential spinoff through all five counties from Columbia to Charlotte.

In fact, as Ty points out, the Megasite has some advantages that even our sister regions in the Palmetto State don’t have, much less competing sites in this part of the country. That includes multiple major freeways, roughly equidistant access to the deep-water port in Charleston and international air hub in Charlotte, and, of critical importance, two distinct labor markets — Columbia and Charlotte — that have well more than 2 million working people between them.

While the I-77 Alliance will collaborate with Fairfield County and S.C. Department of Commerce on marketing the Megasite to industry executives and location consultants, we also will support our region’s other four counties, to promote their best industrial real estate options as a network of sites for spinoff suppliers.

Ty says that, with all the pieces now in place, he’s extremely optimistic that in the next five years, a significant facility will be occupying the I-77 Megasite. That optimism is buoyed by the attributes of the site itself, its location, and the track record that South Carolina economic developers have of making commitments to corporate stakeholders and then keeping them.

We share his optimism and look forward to sharing the news soon of a major manufacturer staking its claim here with a transformational new presence at the I-77 International Megasite.

Industrial automation systems provider creating 90 new jobs

ROCK HILL, S.C.Eclipse Automation, a provider of automated systems for a variety of industries, today announced plans to locate new operations in York County. The company’s $4.6 million investment is projected to create 90 new jobs over the next five years.

Eclipse Automation is a leading supplier of custom automated manufacturing equipment for the life sciences, energy, transportation, mining and telecommunications industries. With locations in Canada and the United States, Eclipse Automation delivers state-of-the-art solutions through automation technology and project experience. For 2018, the organization ranked No. 206 on the Growth 500 list of Canada’s fastest-growing companies by Canada Business magazine, and for the fourth consecutive year was named as one of Canada’s Best-Managed Companies for overall business performance by Deloitte’s Canada’s Best Managed Companies program.

Located at 1510 Cedar Line Drive in Rock Hill, S.C., the company’s newly-renovated, 57,000-square-foot facility is projected to come online in March 2019. Those interested in joining the Eclipse Automation team can visit the company’s careers page for more information.

The Coordinating Council for Economic Development has approved job development credits related to this project. A $150,000 Set Aside grant was also awarded to York County to assist with costs associated with the project.

QUOTES

“The Rock Hill facility is the perfect location to support our long-term growth plan and ongoing commitment to our customers. Eclipse is focused on delivering innovative automated solutions worldwide, and we believe that South Carolina has an impressive reputation in quality manufacturing and developing skilled resources. Both will provide a solid foundation for success at our new location.” -Eclipse Automation President and CEO Steve Mai

“When considering options to facilitate our next growth phase, the new location in Rock Hill quickly emerged as a strong contender. Ready access to skilled trades, subcontractors and key customers had already pointed our compass toward the Rock Hill site, but encouragement from the city, county and state levels helped seal the deal. We’re excited at becoming a part of the vibrant Rock Hill business community.” -Eclipse Automation Southeast President Eric Nitsche

“South Carolina’s workforce continues to demonstrate that it can produce high-quality products. Eclipse Automation’s decision to establish operations in York County is a testament to that, and it shows the world that we’re going to continue to blaze a trail in manufacturing.” -Gov. Henry McMaster

“We’re excited to celebrate the continued success of our state’s thriving manufacturing industry. I offer my congratulations to Eclipse Automation on this milestone announcement for their company, and we look forward to supporting them as they grow and prosper in our state.” -Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt

“We are proud to welcome Eclipse Automation as they establish their new operations here in York County. It is always exciting when a business of this caliber picks York County to call home. Eclipse Automation is a leader in the manufacturing industry, and we look forward to watching them continue to grow, invest and create jobs right here in our community.” -York County Council Chairman Michael Johnson

“We’re excited to welcome Eclipse Automation to Rock Hill! We’re grateful they saw the value our community will bring to their business and employees, and honored they chose to call Rock Hill home. I’m confident they’ll find continued support, a talented workforce and resources to grow.” -Rock Hill Mayor John P. Gettys Jr.

FIVE FAST FACTS

  • Eclipse Automation is launching York County operations.
  • $4.6 million investment to create 90 new jobs over the next five years.
  • Eclipse Automation is a leading supplier of custom automated manufacturing equipment for a variety of industries.
  • Located at 1510 Cedar Line Drive in Rock Hill, S.C., the company’s new, 57,000-square-foot facility is projected to come online in March 2019.

Those interested in joining the Eclipse Automation team should visit the company’s careers page for more information.

About S.C. Department of Commerce

As South Carolina’s leading economic development agency, the Department of Commerce works to recruit new businesses and help existing business grow. S.C. Commerce has recruited world-class companies to South Carolina such as BMW, Boeing, Continental, Giti Tire, LPL Financial Holdings, Mercedes-Benz Vans, Samsung, Toray and Volvo Cars and also supports startups, small and existing business, innovation and rural development initiatives. S.C. Commerce partners with the S.C. Technical College System via readySC to support workforce training and recruiting, and with the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce, which provides worker training and employment opportunities within the state. With a strong international footprint, the Palmetto State ranked No. 1 in the nation for attracting jobs through foreign investment on a per capita basis in 2018 — extending its streak of top three finishes since 2011. Additionally, in five of seven years, the state has won the Gold Shovel Award from Area Development magazine; and, in 2017, the state was recognized as Business Facilities’ State of the Year. For more information, visit www.SCcommerce.com.

Media Contact:
Adrienne R. Fairwell, APR
Director of Marketing & Communications
South Carolina Department of Commerce
(803) 737-1998
afairwell@sccommerce.com
www.SCcommerce.com

We lead off our 2019 series of monthly blogs with our confidence that the five counties served by the South Carolina I-77 Alliance will see another strong year of industrial and business announcements and growth.

At the Alliance itself, we’ll also continue to build out our ability to effectively market the I-77 corridor to domestic and international prospects, and our ability to quantify results and our value to the stakeholders who invest in and trust us as their economic development partners.

Recap of 2018
First, let’s recap the year just past. The Alliance is happy to report that we now have a fifth member. Fast-growing Lancaster County signed on in 2018, joining York, Chester, Fairfield and Richland counties. It’s a natural fit geographically, demographically, culturally, and in every business sense. We’re thrilled to have them aboard.

We also had another good turnout for our fourth annual economic summit at our Gateway Conference Center alongside I-77 near Richburg in Chester County, where a key topic included a look at what we expect will soon be a game-changer for Fairfield County and the surrounding region.

That would be the creation of the I-77 International Megasite, a 1,500-acre property about 20 miles north of Columbia and 60 miles south of Charlotte that is now ready for marketing as the home for a major player such as an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) in the automotive sector.

An announcement like that would build on the success reported in 2018 by the S.C. Department of Commerce in the five-county corridor. The department reports 17 announcements totaling $275.3 million in pledged investments and 3,838 new jobs in York, Lancaster, Chester, Fairfield and Richland counties.

There’s strength in diversity, thus it’s encouraging to note that these announcements were from small, closely held firms and major multinationals alike, and across a range of verticals: four were in business and financial services, two were automotive equipment manufacturers, three were advanced materials manufacturers, and eight were advanced manufacturers.

Some specifics show that range. Consider QEMS Inc. opening a 110,000-square-foot facility in York County that will employ 110 people in the design and manufacture of customized circuit board assemblies and electronic systems.

In Chester County, Carolina Poly Inc. expects to create 75 new jobs as it expands its production of polyethylene film for uses that range from trash bags to shrink wraps.

Then there’s Healthcare US Co.’s plans to this month begin producing memory-foam mattresses in the former Mack Truck assembly plant in Fairfield County, creating 250 new jobs. Their parent company, Healthcare Co., Ltd., is China’s largest publicly-traded memory-foam mattress manufacturer. This announcement confirms that our region has the attributes and resources to compete globally for tract foreign direct investment (FDI).

In Richland County, Owens Corning just announced plans to create a glass non-wovens center of excellence, putting 16 people to work developing solutions that support the Ohio-based company’s operations in 37 countries (including four sites already in operation across South Carolina).

Last but not least, ServiceMac plans to create 1,000 new jobs over the next five years at its new mortgage sub-servicing operation in Lancaster County.

These are just one example each of our five counties. There are many more highlighted in the Recent News section on our home page.

Our Goals and Vision for 2019
In 2019, we plan to double down on our efforts to attract more employers and more investment to the I-77 corridor. That will include executing on our own strategic plan, highlights of which include tripling the number of our self-generated marketing missions to prospects and industrial shows around the country and the world.

That’s atop the trips we already make in concert with other stakeholders, such as the SC Department of Commerce, as this will require further strengthening our relationships with our partners and more deeply engaging them in our joint marketing efforts. To show them the value of this engagement, we’re also bolstering our reporting, with expanded use of accountability charts, metrics, and scorecards.

We also plan to bolster the value we provide our partners with more robust use of marketing videos and printed collateral and the continued development of our research services and data platforms.

The South Carolina I-77 Alliance will continue to work hard to solidify our role as the go-to source for site availability, regional workforce data, and all you need to know about the I-77 corridor in South Carolina, especially for local developers or corporate executives or any other stakeholder interested in building a future together here in our dynamic five-county region

Manufacturing facility to create 25 new jobs

COLUMBIA, S.C. Miwon Specialty Chemical Co. USA, a specialty chemical manufacturer of raw materials and subsidiary of Miwon Specialty Chemical Co. Ltd., today announced plans to locate new production operations in Richland County. The company’s $19.5 million investment is projected to create 25 new jobs.

Miwon Specialty Chemical Co. Ltd., based in South Korea, is a global company with manufacturing plants in South Korea and Spain, as well as research and development centers in Austria, China, South Korea and the United States. Miwon began serving the ultraviolet and electron beam (UV/EB) markets in 1983. The company produces and supplies raw materials for eco-friendly UV/EB curing systems that are utilized in a variety of applications, including in high-quality inks for food packaging; in special coatings for wood, plastic and metal; and in adhesives for DVD/Blu-ray discs and mobile phones.

Miwon Specialty Chemical’s new, 65,000-square-foot production facility will be located at 1700 Longwood Road in Columbia, S.C. and is expected to come online in the third quarter of 2020. Hiring is projected to begin in the first quarter of 2020, and interested applicants can visit www.miramer.com for more information.

QUOTES

“As the leader in energy curing raw materials, Miwon demonstrates its commitment to enhancing its global presence by supporting the U.S. market with local production. This new plant is Miwon’s first manufacturing facility in the United States that is designated to support the growth of domestic customers, many of whom are located in the southeastern part of the country. We are proud to locate in South Carolina, and particularly in Richland County, which offers a business-friendly atmosphere and strong workforce with positive attitudes that are the core of a healthy business.” -Miwon Specialty Chemical Co., Ltd. Chairman H.W. Kim

“We’re proud to welcome Miwon Specialty Chemical to the South Carolina business community and look forward to seeing all that we know they will achieve in the Midlands. With a workforce at its disposal that is second to none and one of the most competitive business environments in the world, we know that Miwon Specialty Chemical will have the tools necessary for success.” –Gov. Henry McMaster

“In 25 years, South Carolina has gone from being a textile, tobacco and tourism state to a state that can engage in complex, advanced manufacturing. Miwon Specialty Chemical’s new, state-of-the-art production facility shows the world South Carolina’s reputation as a manufacturing powerhouse is well-earned.” -Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt

“We welcome Miwon Specialty Chemical to Richland County. This new production operation and the 25 jobs it will bring build on our success in growing our manufacturing sector and strengthening our economy.” -Richland County Economic Development Committee Chairman Paul Livingston


FIVE FAST FACTS

  • Miwon Specialty Chemical is locating new operations in Richland County.
  • $19.5 million investment to create 25 new jobs.
  • Miwon is a specialty chemical manufacturer of raw materials that are utilized in inks, coatings, adhesives and other market applications.
  • Miwon Specialty Chemical’s new, 65,000-square-foot production facility will be located at 1700 Longwood Road in Columbia, S.C. and is expected to come online in the third quarter of 2020.

Hiring is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2020, and interested applicants can visit www.miramer.com for more information.

About S.C. Department of Commerce

As South Carolina’s leading economic development agency, the Department of Commerce works to recruit new businesses and help existing business grow. S.C. Commerce has recruited world-class companies to South Carolina such as BMW, Boeing, Continental, Giti Tire, LPL Financial Holdings, Mercedes-Benz Vans, Samsung, Toray and Volvo Cars and also supports startups, small and existing business, innovation and rural development initiatives. S.C. Commerce partners with the S.C. Technical College System via readySC to support workforce training and recruiting, and with the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce, which provides worker training and employment opportunities within the state. With a strong international footprint, the Palmetto State ranked No. 1 in the nation for attracting jobs through foreign investment on a per capita basis in 2018 — extending its streak of top three finishes since 2011. Additionally, in five of seven years, the state has won the Gold Shovel Award from Area Development magazine; and, in 2017, the state was recognized as Business Facilities’ State of the Year. For more information, visit www.SCcommerce.com.

Media Contact:

Alex Clark
Deputy Director of Marketing & Communications
South Carolina Department of Commerce
(803) 737-0685
aclark@sccommerce.com
www.SCcommerce.com

The  I-77 International Megasite is now ready to be claimed by a major manufacturer that can bring 2,000 jobs or more to the property along Interstate 77 just north of Columbia, SC, and an hour south of Charlotte, NC.

The 1,500-acre site was acquired recently by Fairfield County in partnership with the S.C. Department of Commerce and is designed for use by a single occupant. The master plan calls for more than 9 million square feet under roof, along with a rail spur, electrical substation, and million-gallon water tank.

Site Master Plan — Proposed
State and local officials are targeting their marketing of the International Megasite toward landing an operation such as a major automotive assembly plant looking to take advantage of easy access to multiple interstate highways, air hubs in Charlotte and Columbia, and the Port of Charleston.

The site is about 20 miles north of Columbia and 60 miles south of Charlotte. A civilian labor force of nearly 850,000 people, and more than 20 vocational and technical training opportunities, are within an hour’s drive or less.

USA Level Infrastructure Map

“The International Megasite is ready to represent the next chapter in the Palmetto State’s record of building a major presence in the transportation manufacturing space, including automotive and aerospace. When this property is a thriving workplace, the benefits will be felt across South Carolina,” said S.C. Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt.

“We’re excited to begin marketing the International Megasite. Competitive incentives, a ready and willing workforce and proximity to Charlotte and Columbia — both known for their outstanding lifestyle, entertainment and educational opportunities — is going to make this a great home for a world-class manufacturer,” said Rich Fletcher, President & CEO of the SC I-77 Alliance, which markets the I-77 corridor for Chester, Fairfield, Lancaster, Richland and York counties.

State Level Infrastructure Map

“The work to attract that one mega manufacturer for our Megasite is now officially under way. We’re thrilled about the potential impact this industrial development will have on our community and beyond,” said Ty Davenport, Director of Fairfield County Economic Development.

Visitors to www.i77megasite.com will find a master plan and infrastructure details about the site along I-77 near Exit 34. There’s also information about the available labor force, incentives, educational and lifestyle opportunities and other advantages awaiting the future occupant.

VIEW WEBSITE AND VIDEO HERE
About I-77 International Megasite
The I-77 International Megasite is located in Fairfield County, South Carolina, USA.  Located off Exit 34 along I-77, this 1,500+ acre, industrially zoned and county owned site offers a proposed 9.2 million sq. ft. of space. Designed for use by a single occupant, the master plan calls for more than 9 million square feet under roof, along with a rail spur, electrical substation, and million-gallon water tank. For more information, visit www.I77megasite.com.
Copyright © 2019 South Carolina I-77 Alliance, All rights reserved.

$24 million investment in 100,000-square-foot office facility

COLUMBIA, S.C. ServiceMac, a mortgage subservicing company, today announced plans to locate new operations in Lancaster County. The company’s $24 million capital investment is projected to create approximately 1,000 new jobs over the next five years.

Led by industry veteran Bob Caruso, ServiceMac is backed by some of the leading practitioners in the mortgage servicing industry. Committed to providing a robust, scalable and digitally-driven subservicing process, the company features full lifecycle management, end-to-end compliance and tailored solutions to fit clients’ operations and priorities. ServiceMac aims to bring superior technology, products and services to the mortgage industry, bolstered by personalized service and support with the utmost focus on customer satisfaction.

The company plans to move into a 100,000-square-foot office facility in the Bailes Ridge Corporate Park, located in Indian Land, S.C. Hiring for the new positions is slated to begin in the first quarter of 2019, and interested applicants are encouraged to visit the company’s careers page for more information.

The Coordinating Council for Economic Development has approved job development credits related to this project. A $100,000 Set Aside grant was also awarded to Lancaster County to assist with the costs of building improvements.

For additional information on ServiceMac, visit www.servicemacusa.com.

QUOTES

“ServiceMac looks forward to establishing our operations in Lancaster County and being able to recruit locally from a strong talent pool. We appreciate the efforts of both local and state economic development partners in helping us make the decision to locate in South Carolina possible.”– ServiceMac CEO Bob Caruso

“ServiceMac’s decision to establish operations with 1,000 new jobs in Lancaster County speaks volumes to the confidence in both our people and the business-friendly climate of South Carolina. We are proud to celebrate economic diversity in every corner of the state, and we are proud that ServiceMac is choosing to call South Carolina home. We look forward to growing our partnership in the years ahead.” -Gov. Henry McMaster

“Today’s announcement reinforces a growing trend – that South Carolina is ‘Just right’ for office operations. We are pleased that ServiceMac will call our state home and look forward to seeing them grow and thrive for years to come.” -Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt

“Lancaster County has become a premier destination for corporate headquarters facilities, and ServiceMac’s decision continues the trend. We couldn’t be happier that Lancaster County will be the base of their operations and the many well-paying jobs which they will bring. The company’s confidence in our business climate and workforce is very much appreciated. Congratulations to ServiceMac, the Lancaster County Department of Economic Development, the Charlotte Regional Business Alliance (formerly Charlotte Regional Partnership) and the S.C. Department of Commerce for working together to make this announcement possible.” -Lancaster County Council Chairman Steve Harper

“It’s another golden day for Lancaster County with ServiceMac locating its operations in Indian Land. The ServiceMac team is impressive; and, from the outset, the Lancaster County Department of Economic Development was strongly committed to winning this highly-competitive project. Lancaster County has earned a reputation for being the location of choice in the Charlotte region for newer companies seeking the right environment to successfully execute aggressive business strategies. We welcome ServiceMac to that growing and impressive list.” -Lancaster County Department of Economic Development Director Jamie Gilbert

FIVE FAST FACTS

  • ServiceMac is locating new office operations in Lancaster County.
  • $24 million investment to create approximately 1,000 new jobs over the next five years.
  • ServiceMac is a mortgage subservicing company providing a variety of mortgage solutions to its clients, focusing on customer service.
  • The company will be locating its new operations in a 100,000-square-foot office in the Bailes Ridge Corporate Park.
  • Hiring for the new positions is slated to begin in the first quarter of 2019, and interested applicants are encouraged to visit the company’s careers page for more information.

About ServiceMac

ServiceMac is focused on providing superior technology, products and services for the mortgage industry backed by highly personalized service and support. Through continuous innovation and acquisition, its offerings are comprised of personalized solutions that span the mortgage continuum and enhance security, customer satisfaction and profitability. More information can be found at www.servicemacusa.com. For inquiries, please contact Eric Sadow at eric.sadow@servicemacusa.com

About S.C. Department of Commerce

As South Carolina’s leading economic development agency, the Department of Commerce works to recruit new businesses and help existing business grow. S.C. Commerce has recruited world-class companies to South Carolina such as BMW, Boeing, Continental, Giti Tire, LPL Financial Holdings, Mercedes-Benz Vans, Samsung, Toray and Volvo Cars and also supports startups, small and existing business, innovation and rural development initiatives. S.C. Commerce partners with the S.C. Technical College System via readySC to support workforce training and recruiting, and with the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce, which provides worker training and employment opportunities within the state. With a strong international footprint, the Palmetto State ranked No. 1 in the nation for attracting jobs through foreign investment on a per capita basis in 2018 — extending its streak of top three finishes since 2011. Additionally, in five of seven years, the state has won the Gold Shovel Award from Area Development magazine; and, in 2017, the state was recognized as Business Facilities’ State of the Year. For more information, visit www.SCcommerce.com.

Media Contact:

Adrienne R. Fairwell, APR
Director of Marketing & Communications
South Carolina Department of Commerce
(803) 737-1998
afairwell@sccommerce.com
www.SCcommerce.com

Manufacturing acquisition results in $13.6 million investment

BLYTHEWOOD, S.C. Owens Corning, a developer and producer of insulation, roofing and fiberglass composites, has acquired an existing manufacturing facility in Blythewood, S.C., where it will manufacture coated, non-woven products for a variety of applications within the North American building materials industry. The company’s $13.6 million capital investment is projected to bring 16 new jobs.

Owens Corning develops, manufactures and markets insulation, roofing and fiberglass composites. The company’s market-leading businesses use their deep expertise in materials, manufacturing and building science to develop products and systems that save energy and improve comfort in commercial and residential buildings. Based in Toledo, Ohio, Owens Corning employs more than 19,000 people across 37 countries.

The company has acquired an existing manufacturing facility located at 1051 Jenkins Brothers Road in Blythewood, S.C., with plans to convert an existing line to produce coated, non-woven products. The acquisition is the first step in the creation of a glass non-wovens excellence center, where the company will continue to invest to expand its capacity with the best available technologies. With existing South Carolina locations in Aiken, Charleston, Duncan and Starr, this will be Owens Corning’s first Richland County presence. Hiring for the new positions is expected to begin in late 2019.

The Coordinating Council for Economic Development has awarded a $150,000 Set Aside grant to Richland County to assist with the costs of building renovations.

QUOTES

“The Blythewood operation represents a valuable addition to a thriving business. Adding this new capacity and capability for glass-based coating solutions in South Carolina will help us to better serve our residential and commercial building products customers across North America.” -Owens Corning’s Global Non-Wovens Business Vice President Nicolas Del Monaco

“Today, we’re excited to celebrate this announcement and welcome another Owens Corning manufacturing facility to the South Carolina business community. This state has an impressive roster of globally-renowned manufacturers operating within its borders, and we’re proud of Owens Corning’s commitment to South Carolina.”-Gov. Henry McMaster

“It’s a great day for the Midlands as Owens Corning has decided to invest in this Richland County facility. A testament to the loyal, highly-skilled workforce that exists within the local community, this new project only adds to South Carolina’s reputation as an ideal destination for manufacturing.” –Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt

“We are grateful that Owens Corning has chosen Richland County to locate its operations. They are breathing life back into a plant that has suffered many losses, and we are excited to see what the future holds.” –Richland County Economic Development Committee Chairman Paul Livingston

FIVE FAST FACTS

  • Owens Corning is launching its first Richland County operations.
  • $13.6 million investment to create 16 new jobs.
  • Owens Corning develops, manufactures and markets insulation, roofing and fiberglass composites.
  • The company has acquired an existing manufacturing facility in Blythewood, S.C., where it plans to convert an existing line to produce coated, non-woven products.
  • Hiring for the new positions is expected to begin in late 2019

About S.C. Department of Commerce

As South Carolina’s leading economic development agency, the Department of Commerce works to recruit new businesses and help existing business grow. S.C. Commerce has recruited world-class companies to South Carolina such as BMW, Boeing, Continental, Giti Tire, LPL Financial Holdings, Mercedes-Benz Vans, Samsung, Toray and Volvo Cars and also supports startups, small and existing business, innovation and rural development initiatives. S.C. Commerce partners with the S.C. Technical College System via readySC to support workforce training and recruiting, and with the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce, which provides worker training and employment opportunities within the state. With a strong international footprint, the Palmetto State ranked No. 1 in the nation for attracting jobs through foreign investment on a per capita basis in 2018 — extending its streak of top three finishes since 2011. Additionally, in five of seven years, the state has won the Gold Shovel Award from Area Development magazine; and, in 2017, the state was recognized as Business Facilities’ State of the Year. For more information, visit www.SCcommerce.com.

Media Contact:

Adrienne R. Fairwell, APR
Director of Marketing & Communications
South Carolina Department of Commerce
(803) 737-1998
afairwell@sccommerce.com
www.SCcommerce.com

Mattress manufacturer creating 250 new jobs

WINNSBORO, S.C. — Healthcare US Co., Ltd., a venture of China-based Healthcare Co., Ltd., today announced plans to establish new operations in Fairfield County. The company’s $45 million investment is projected to create 250 new jobs.

Founded in Jiangsu, China in 2003, Healthcare Co., Ltd. is the first publicly-traded, memory-foam mattress manufacturer in China and is now the largest such manufacturer in that country. Becoming a global industry leader, the company has established production operations in both Serbia and Spain, with approximately 3,600 workers worldwide.

Healthcare US Co., Ltd. is expected to launch its new, 650,000-square-foot facility in the first quarter of 2019. Located at 1 Guardian Way in Winnsboro, S.C., the operation will specialize in the production of memory-foam mattresses for a variety of customers. Hiring is also slated to begin early next year, and interested applicants should contact healthcare.us@hkfoam.com for more information.

The Coordinating Council for Economic Development has awarded a $300,000 Rural Infrastructure Fund grant to Fairfield County to assist with the costs of building renovations.

QUOTES

“We’re happy to be establishing this new facility in Fairfield County, and we are very appreciative of the ongoing support from both the local and state governments. This is a milestone for our company, and we are excited to support the community we will soon be calling home.” -Healthcare Co., Ltd. President James Ni

“South Carolina has been attracting business from all over the world for years because we have worked hard to create a business friendly climate and a workforce that is second to none. We’re thrilled that Healthcare US Co., Ltd. has chosen to join the ranks of international companies that call our state home and look forward to many years of success.” –Gov. Henry McMaster

“South Carolina’s ongoing economic success can be attributed, in part, to our manufacturing prowess and ability to recruit foreign direct investment. This $45 million investment in Fairfield County only reinforces that notion. We look forward to this new partnership with Healthcare US Co., Ltd.” -Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt

“Fairfield County is beyond excited and thankful that Healthcare US Co., Ltd. has chosen to locate its first U.S. factory in Winnsboro. The representatives of this company with whom we’ve worked throughout this process have been a pleasure to do business with, and we look forward to their future operation and success within the county. We welcome them with open and supporting arms and are hopeful that others will see this and know that Fairfield County is open for business and focused on the kind of growth that will be beneficial both for our citizens and the businesses that choose to locate and invest with us.” -Fairfield County Council Chairman Billy Smith

“We welcome Healthcare US Co., Ltd. to Fairfield County and the Central S.C. region. The company’s enthusiasm for this new location shows promise for great opportunities within the county and for the local workforce. We are excited to see things take shape in the coming months for Healthcare US Co., Ltd. and our friends in Fairfield.” – Central S.C. Alliance Chairman Mike Brenan

“We are excited to welcome Healthcare US Co., Ltd. to Fairfield County and the I-77 Alliance region. Healthcare US Co., Ltd.’s commitment to Fairfield County is a testament to the strong manufacturing workforce in the county and the support of county government and community leaders. Fairfield County’s proximity to Charlotte Douglas International Airport and the numerous amenities of the Charlotte and Columbia metro areas continue to make it an extremely attractive community for foreign and domestic investment.” -South Carolina I-77 Alliance President and CEO Rich Fletcher

FIVE FAST FACTS

  • Healthcare US Co., Ltd. is launching new Fairfield County operations.
  • $45 million investment to create 250 new jobs.
  • Healthcare US Co., Ltd. is a China-based manufacturer of memory-foam mattresses for a variety of customers.
  • Located at 1 Guardian Way in Winnsboro, S.C., the company is expected to launch its new, 650,000-square-foot facility in the first quarter of 2019.

Hiring is expected to begin simultaneously, and interested applicants should contact healthcare.us@hkfoam.com for more information

About S.C. Department of Commerce

As South Carolina’s leading economic development agency, the Department of Commerce works to recruit new businesses and help existing business grow. S.C. Commerce has recruited world-class companies to South Carolina such as BMW, Boeing, Continental, Giti Tire, LPL Financial Holdings, Mercedes-Benz Vans, Samsung, Toray and Volvo Cars and also supports startups, small and existing business, innovation and rural development initiatives. S.C. Commerce partners with the S.C. Technical College System via readySC to support workforce training and recruiting, and with the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce, which provides worker training and employment opportunities within the state. With a strong international footprint, the Palmetto State ranked No. 1 in the nation for attracting jobs through foreign investment on a per capita basis in 2018 — extending its streak of top three finishes since 2011. Additionally, in five of seven years, the state has won the Gold Shovel Award from Area Development magazine; and, in 2017, the state was recognized as Business Facilities’ State of the Year. For more information, visit www.SCcommerce.com.

Media Contact:

Alex Clark
Deputy Director of Marketing & Communications
South Carolina Department of Commerce
(803) 737-0685
aclark@sccommerce.com
www.SCcommerce.com

Electronics manufacturer creating 110 new jobs

ROCK HILL, S.C. Quality Electronic Manufacturing Services, Inc., (QEMS), a provider of electronics manufacturing services, today announced that it has located new operations in York County. The company’s $7.6 million investment is projected to create 110 new jobs.

Established in 2002, QEMS is a minority-owned manufacturer featuring complete assembly capabilities for both thru-hole and surface mount technology, including design services, automatic optical inspection, x-ray inspection, testing, conformal coating and potting and more. As a contract manufacturer, the company provides high-tech, turnkey manufacturing solutions for a variety of clients.

Located at 200 Interconnect Drive in Rock Hill, S.C., QEMS’ new, 110,000-square-foot facility came online in August 2018. Hiring for the new positions is currently underway, and interested applicants should visit www.qemsinc.com for more information.

The Coordinating Council for Economic Development has approved job development credits related to this project. A $100,000 Set Aside grant was also awarded to York County to assist with the costs of building upfit.

QUOTES

 “This will be the start of a new chapter in our company’s history. This is a wonderful opportunity for significant, sustainable growth. We attribute much of our growth to the diversity of our customers in terms of their product applications. No matter what industry they are in, quality is the name of the game. Our specialty is helping our customers get their product designs to market quickly and cost-competitively.” -QEMS, Inc. Executive Vice President Hannah Pham

 “South Carolina’s workforce continues to exhibit unmatched excellence, and companies like QEMS are taking notice. They know that the hardworking people of this state will get the job done, helping them operate a successful, thriving facility in York County for years to come.” -Gov. Henry McMaster

“Our state’s economy has been transformed over the last three decades, as we continue growing as a high-tech economy with global connectivity. The fact that QEMS chose South Carolina as the location for its new electronics manufacturing operations is further proof of that transformation.” -Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt

“We welcome QEMS to York County. We are pleased to see that they have found an ideal location in York County to establish their new electronic manufacturing operations. We look forward to seeing them continue to grow, invest and create jobs here.” -York County Council Chairman Britt Blackwell

FIVE FAST FACTS

  • QEMS, Inc. has located new operations in York County.
  • $7.6 million investment to create 110 new jobs.
  • QEMS is a provider of electronics manufacturing services.
  • Located at 200 Interconnect Drive in Rock Hill, S.C., the company’s new, 110,000-square-foot facility came online in August 2018.

Hiring for the new positions is currently underway, and interested applicants should visit www.qemsinc.com for more information.

About S.C. Department of Commerce

As South Carolina’s leading economic development agency, the Department of Commerce works to recruit new businesses and help existing business grow. S.C. Commerce has recruited world-class companies to South Carolina such as BMW, Boeing, Continental, Giti Tire, LPL Financial Holdings, Mercedes-Benz Vans, Samsung, Toray and Volvo Cars and also supports startups, small and existing business, innovation and rural development initiatives. S.C. Commerce partners with the S.C. Technical College System via readySC to support workforce training and recruiting, and with the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce, which provides worker training and employment opportunities within the state. With a strong international footprint, the Palmetto State ranked No. 1 in the nation for attracting jobs through foreign investment on a per capita basis in 2018 — extending its streak of top three finishes since 2011. Additionally, in five of seven years, the state has won the Gold Shovel Award from Area Development magazine; and, in 2017, the state was recognized as Business Facilities’ State of the Year. For more information, visit www.SCcommerce.com.

Media Contact:

Adrienne R. Fairwell, APR
Director of Marketing & Communications
South Carolina Department of Commerce
(803) 737-1998
afairwell@sccommerce.com
www.SCcommerce.com

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