Facebook

BMW announces nearly $900 million investment, adding 300 jobs at its South Carolina plant

By Jim Fair, Editor
Published on Thursday, January 12, 2012

Enlarge photo

BMW Manufacturing Co. in Greer announced it is investing $900 million, adding 300 jobs and expanding its X-model family. Participating in the announcement are, from the left, Josef Kerscher, President of BMW Manufacturing, Gov. Nikki Haley and Frank-Peter Arndt, BMW Group Board Member responsible for Production.

BMW Manufacturing Co. in Greer announced it is investing $900 million, adding 300 jobs and expanding its X-model family. Participating in the announcement are, from the left, Josef Kerscher, President of BMW Manufacturing, Gov. Nikki Haley and Frank-Peter Arndt, BMW Group Board Member responsible for Production.

BMW Manufacturing Co. in Greer announced it will invest $900 million, revealed the production of the new X4 and will create 300 jobs. The announcement was made to also mark the plant’s production of its 2 millionth vehicle since BMW began production in 1994.

“With this investment, we will be able to produce 350,000 units here in the mid-term," said Frank-Peter Arndt, BMW Group Board Member responsible for Production.  "This is one reaction to the rising global demand for our BMW X Models."

Gov. Nikki Haley joined Josef Kerscher, President of BMW Manufacturing, in making the announcement among congressmen, state and local politicians and business leaders.

The X4 will be a new model introduced by BMW.. “We will be expanding every facility within our existing plant. We built the plant with flexibility intentionally. The vehicle’s design and date for production is a secret,” Kerscher said.

Construction has begun and the paint facility will be expanded for the third time since it was originally built.

Kerscher said he expects the facility to peak at 8,000 employees by 2014.

Haley said, “BMW has once again provided tremendous evidence that South Carolina is a blueprint for significant economic development success. The partnership between this company and our state is an enduring example of how to attract, retain and grow business to stimulate perpetual job creation."

With the addition of 300 new jobs this year the plant will raise production capacities up to 300,000 units. By the end of the year, the plant will employ nearly 7,500 people at its more than 4-million square foot facility. 

Since the original 1992 decision to build BMW’s only U.S. plant in South Carolina, today’s announcement brings BMW Group’s total investment in the state to nearly $6 billion and represents its largest, single investment to date in its South Carolina plant.

Greer Mayor Rick Danner and City Administrator were among the invited guests today. 

“The $900 million investment is certainly impressive,” Danner said. “It shows the faith the (BMW) board has in the production facility. This announcement is like (BMW) saying, ‘we’re driving our stake further into the ground.’”

Driggers said the impact would be felt through Greer’s residential, commercial and jobs segments.  “By creating jobs it increases development in housing and commercial development. It also has an effect on the tax base and disposable income.”

“I am thrilled to celebrate the two millionth BMW today,” said Bobby Hitt, Secretary of Commerce for South Carolina. “BMW’s impact on South Carolina’s economy and overall competitiveness is always worth celebrating. This new economic investment and commitment of jobs is a testament to South Carolina’s strong automotive manufacturing industry.”

In 2011, the plant produced 276,065 vehicles for over 130 markets around the world representing a 73 percent increase versus 2010. Seventy percent of the vehicles produced (192,813) were exported making BMW the largest automotive exporter to the non-NAFTA countries. According to Arndt, throughout the world, more that 117,000 X3s were sold in 2011 representing a 156 percent growth of this vehicle versus its predecessor.  

The 2 millionth vehicle to roll off the line in Greer was a Vermillion Red Metallic X3 xDrive35i. The vehicle featured Oyster Nevada interior and an M Sport package.  

This symbolic vehicle will remain on display at the Greer plant to commemorate the milestone.

Since 1994, the plant has undergone four major expansions and produced 6 different BMW models and their variants (318i, Z3, Z4, X5, X6, X3). Employment has grown from 500 in 1994 to more than 7,000 today.

Businesses mentioned in this article.

BMW

Share



Related Photo Galleries


Leave a Comment



Trending: Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport, Obituaries, Chon Restaurant, Allen Bennett Hospital