BONHAM — Gestamp is expanding and will invest $129 million in that expansion and create 130 new jobs as a result.
In a statement released Tuesday, the SC Department of Commerce announced that Gestamp, which it describes as “an international manufacturer of metal automotive components, is expanding its existing facility in Union County in an effort to meet increased demand from local automotive original equipment manufacturers. The project is expected to bring $129 million in new capital investment and lead to the creation of 130 jobs.”
The press release further states that “with a workforce of more than 34,000 associates, Gestamp operates 98 manufacturing plants worldwide and has ten more under construction. The company specializes in the development and manufacturing of metal components and structural systems for the automotive industry. Utilizing a variety of technologies, including hot and cold stamping, hydroforming, laser welding and more, Gestamp also has 12 research and development facilities focused on continued innovation.”
It further states that “designed to serve the existing BMW and Volvo Cars operations in South Carolina, Gestamp will be adding more than 300,000 square feet of space to its current operations, which are located at One LSP Road in Union, S.C. The company will also be constructing 123,000 square feet of new space and adding another 182,000 square feet by leasing an existing building.”
Gestamp North America CEO Jeff Wilson said the expansion is an important step in the company’s plans for future growth.
“This new project multiplies our size in South Carolina with a remarkable investment that shows how committed we are with our future operations at the Union County plant,” Wilson said. “The United States is a strategic market for us, where we have six plants in five different states, and we want to grow in this country with the major car manufacturers. This is an important step forward.”
The 130 new jobs projected to be created by the expansion will need to be filled and the press release states that “hiring for the new positions is expected to begin in the second quarter of 2018, and those interested in applying should contact [email protected] For more information on the company, visit www.gestamp.com.”
The expansion of the Gestamp facility was welcomed by both state and local officials who to it as a sign of the continuing success of the business-friendly both in Union County and in South Carolina as a whole.
“South Carolina’s economy is as strong as it has ever been, and it continues to grow with companies like Gestamp investing in our state and our people,” Gov. Henry McMaster said. “The state’s strong automotive industry is one of the most important forces pushing our economic prosperity forward every day, and that’s because our skilled workforce has proven that it’s better than any other in the world.”
Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt said that “today’s big announcement shows once again that South Carolina’s business-friendly environment is attracting investment and creating jobs, particularly from firms already operating within our borders. I congratulate Gestamp on this tremendous new investment and look forward to watching their continued growth here in South Carolina and around the world.”
Union County Supervisor Frank Hart praised Gestamp for its confidence in Union County which he said has worked hard to be attract, retain, coperate with and support industry.
“We are very excited about this project, our partnership with Gestamp and the confidence that they have in our community,” Hart said. “This major industrial expansion is a testament to the fact that Union County is a great place to locate, operate and expand industrial operations.”
Union County Development Board Chairman Joe Nichols pointed out that the expansion is a reminder of the powerful impact Gestamp has had and is continuing to have on economic development in the county and the Upstate.
“Gestamp continues to be a driving force for economic development in Union County,” Nichols said. “Their new investment of $129 million and the creation of 130 new jobs are a game changer for this county and the region.”
Gestamp’s expansion was facilitated by a variety of both state and local incentives including:
• Job development credits awarded the project by the Coordinating Council for Economic Development.
• A $750,000 Rural Infrastructure Grant awarded Union County to assist with the cost of real property improvements.
Five Fast Facts
The press release includes the following “Five Fast Facts” about Gestamp’s announcement.
• Gestamp is expanding its Union County operations.
• $129 million investment to create 130 new jobs.
• Gestamp is an international manufacturer of metal automotive components and operates 98 manufacturing plants in 21 countries.
• At its current site, located at One LSP Road in Union, S.C., the company will be constructing 123,000 square feet and adding another 182,000 square feet by leasing an existing building.
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. Commerce has recruited world-class companies to South Carolina such as BMW, Boeing, Continental, Giti Tire, LPL Financial Holdings, Mercedes-Benz Vans, Toray and Volvo Cars and also supports startups, small and existing business, innovation and rural development initiatives. 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. In three of five years, IBM-Plant Location International reports ranked South Carolina first in the nation for attracting jobs through foreign investment, per capita. The state won the Gold Shovel Award and the Project of Year Award from Area Development magazine in 2012, 2014 and 2015. For more information, visit www.SCcommerce.com.