Monday, October 8th, 2012
“Get Excited! South Carolina Plastics LLC, a maker of plastic automotive components, announced plans to invest $12 million in our state and create 119 new jobs in Fountain Inn!” That was South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley’s Twitter message following the official announcement of the new factory.
The governor had good reason to be excited, and not only about the $12-million investment and 119 new jobs. The new South Carolina Plastics facility is expected to be operational in February, making auto components such as door modules, door handles, cable drum housings, and seat belt covers, plus various products for the appliance, medical, and rail sectors.
South Carolina Plastics is a subsidiary of Carolina Technical Plastics Corp. (New Bern, NC), which is part of the Wirthwein AG Group headquartered in Creglingen, Germany. Wirthwein is a major global automotive supplier made up of 16 companies in Germany, Poland, China, Spain, and the USA that provides a broad range of plastics molding, mold making, and production capabilities.
The new facility is another addition to South Carolina’s growing advanced manufacturing cluster, which includes a variety of auto suppliers and plastics processors. The growth of automotive production in the Southeastern U.S. region, not only South Carolina, continues, aided by the auto industry’s return to healthy sales figures.
BMW’s American production facility in Spartanburg, SC, about 30
miles northeast of the new factory at Fountain Inn, is the sole manufacturing site
for several models of BMW’s X Series. Supporting BMW’s global presence, the plant exports many of its cars to about 130 countries around the globe.
Just last month the National Association of Foreign Trade Zones recognized BMW Manufacturing Spartanburg as Exporter of the Year—for the second consecutive year. According to U.S. Dept. of Commerce 2011 data, BMW Spartanburg was the largest automotive exporter in America.