Tech giant Samsung announced Wednesday, June 28, it will invest $380 million to bring a new manufacturing facility and 954 jobs to Newberry County.
Samsung Electronics America will set up a state-of-the-art home appliance production and research and development operations in the former Caterpillar plant at 284 Mawsons Way in Newberry.
The company said the plant will create positions during the next three years for craftsmen, operators, engineers, and other technical and non-technical positions. It is expected to begin operation in early 2018.
“For nearly 40 years, Samsung has steadily expanded our operations in the United States, creating thousands of jobs and investing billions of dollars in cutting-edge manufacturing facilities, research, and development,” said Tim Baxter, president and CEO of Samsung Electronics America, in a statement. “With this investment, Samsung is reaffirming its commitment to expanding its U.S. operations and deepening our connection to its American consumers, engineers, and innovators who are driving global trends in consumer electronics.”
In 2016, Caterpillar announced the closure of the Newberry plant and another facility in Ridgeway that resulted in loss of 400 jobs in the state.
Samsung said in a statement it began “contemplating an expansion” of its U.S. production about three years ago and initiated discussions with South Carolina in the fall of 2016.
The company said it chose Newberry County for its “high-skilled workforce, robust supply chain and transportation infrastructure, and commitment to public-private partnerships.”
It did not specify when it plans to begin hiring for the facility.
The S.C. Department of Commerce said the state’s Coordinating Council for Economic Development approved job development credits for the project.
Samsung said the facility will produce premium home appliances, including washing machines. The company has a call center in Greenville County that supports jobs for 800 full-time and contract employees.
Jim Newsome, president and CEO of the S.C. Ports Authority, said Samsung’s investment is “significant” to the Port of Charleston.
“It’s incredibly exciting that a company of the size and caliber of Samsung would choose our community for such a large and important manufacturing project,” said Newberry County Council Chairman Henry H. Livingston III in a statement. “We have a long manufacturing history here in Newberry County, and this writes a whole new chapter. We are honored and proud to have won this project, and we pledge to do whatever we can to make Samsung-Newberry a tremendous success.”
Samsung said Wednesday’s announcement comes on the heels of a series of investments it has made during the past 18 months that total $10 billion.
The investments include an $8 billion acquisition of Connecticut-based HARMAn International, $1.2 billion to U.S.-based Internet of Things R&D and investments, a $1 billion expansion of its semiconductor facility in Austin, Texas, and the acquisition of Dacor, a luxury home appliance company in Los Angeles.
“Innovation is part of our DNA at Samsung and few markets have been more crucial to our company’s growth strategy than the U.S.,” said Byungsam Suh, executive vice president and head Samsung Electronics’ digital appliance business. “We are excited to put even more U.S. engineering power behind our products and look forward to a mutually beneficial partnership with the people of South Carolina.”