Growth at BMW’s Spartanburg County plant has attracted another manufacturer and about 100 new jobs to its local supply chain.
Michigan-based International Mold Corp. announced Thursday it plans to build a new plant on 10.5 acres at 865 Victor Hill Road behind the automaker’s Performance Center off Highway 101 near Greer.
Ben Pfopper, vice president of sales for International Mold, said the company plans to initially build a 24,000-square-foot facility that has the potential to be expanded to about 100,000 square feet.
Pfopper, who relocated to Simpsonville from Michigan in August to establish the Upstate plant, said the company hopes to break ground in the next month or two and anticipates the facility will open in February or March.
The company is a partner with the Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research in Greenville.
“We’re really excited about it,” he said. “We’ve been doing business down here for the last 10 years. We finally decided to move down here to hopefully support BMW any way we can in their efforts to bring their engineering over from Europe.”
County property records showed International Mold purchased the site in March for about $471,000. The property is part of the 131-acre industrial hub Velocity Park, which recently landed a 260,000-square-foot facility for BMW supplier China-based Jiangnan Mould & Plastic Technology Co. Ltd.
Spartanburg County Councilman David Britt declined to comment on International Mold’s plans, as the project is still in progress, but he spoke highly of BMW’s economic impact on the Upstate.
“BMW continues to be the gift that keeps on giving when it comes to their supplier network,” Britt said.
Pfopper said his company specializes in the production of injection and blow molding equipment, as well as RIM tooling and small quantity product runs. Founded in 2006, International Mold has six plants and about 110 employees in Clinton, Mich., he said.
Pfopper said the company plans to purchase another facility in Michigan in the near future. By the time the Spartanburg plant opens, he said the company could have up to 250 employees.
International Mold will likely begin hiring for the local facility at the start of 2017, Pfopper said.
He said the company plans to utilize space at Spartanburg Community College’s Tyger River Campus to store machinery and house employees while the new plant is being built.
Pfopper said the company operates an education program at its plants in Michigan that is focused on recruiting talented young adults to manufacturing. The company will likely offer a similar program in Spartanburg, he said.
“We’re a young company, and we’re going to be around for a while,” Pfopper said. “We’re very proud of our reputation. All of our plants are like a home. They’re very wide open. Our customers can come in and see what’s going on. It’s a really cool environment.”
Pfopper said the company is still finalizing incentives and other details with the county and state.
For more information, visit www.internationalmold.net.