Three Million Upstate-Made BMWs and Counting!March 27, 2015
This week BMW Manufacturing celebrated a major company milestone as it announced the production of its 3 millionth vehicle assembled at its plant in Upstate South Carolina. During a special ceremony at the BMW plant in Spartanburg, S.C., BMW associate Dawn Burgess, presented the keys of the 3 millionth vehicle to Manfred Erlacher, president and CEO of BMW Manufacturing.
(BMW Manufacturing Associates [left to right]: Thomas Watson, Pamela Shaw, Dawn Burgess, Shirley Scott and President and CEO Manfred Erlacher. — Photo: Fred Rollison Photography)
South Carolina Governor Haley spoke of the company’s significant accomplishments in a BMW news release found on the company’s website.
“What a great day to celebrate as BMW marks another milestone in South Carolina,” said Governor Nikki Haley. “Now with three million cars produced with care and pride by South Carolina hands, BMW continues to be one of the shining success stories in our state’s history. We congratulate them on this achievement.”
Jim Newsome, President and CEO of South Carolina Ports Authority, and South Carolina Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt, the former manager of corporate affairs at the BMW who was a major part of the plant’s initial opening, were among the guest speakers at Tuesday’s event.
“For over 20 years, BMW has been a catalyst for the exponential growth of our state’s auto sector, which today includes companies in 40 of our 46 counties,” said Hitt. “But beyond our borders, it’s a point of pride for our workforce that now three million world-class, quality-made vehicles have been delivered for the global market – from right here in South Carolina.”
“BMW operations are a tremendous asset to our port and state, and we are proud to celebrate the milestone achievement of three million vehicles produced with their leadership and talented workforce,” said Newsome. “Automotive manufacturing is significant to the port for both import and export volume growth. BMW is the largest user of our roll-on/roll-off facility at the Columbus Street Terminal as well as the SC Inland Port, and their expansions have been exciting opportunities for us. We value our role in BMW’s international supply chain and look forward to a strong continued partnership.”
BMW’s single plant in South Carolina exceeded exports from Michigan, Alabama and California, resulting in an annual value totaling $9.2 billion. Last year, nearly 250,000 vehicles were exported from BMW’s South Carolina plant—over 70% of the plant’s total volume. BMW’s success was a major reason South Carolina was named the top state in the Southeast and sixth in the nation for export growth.
During an announcement in March 2014, BMW released it would invest $1 billion into its South Carolina plant from 2014 through 2016 and would boost production capacity from 350,000 units to 450,000 units per year, making the Spartanburg facility the highest-capacity plant in the BMW global system by the end of 2016. At this time, the company also announced it would begin production of the new BMW X7 and create an additional 800 jobs in the Upstate. Upon completion of this project, the total workforce at the Greer plant would reach 8,800.
In addition to its large-scale investments in the Upstate region, a study released by the Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina, reported that since the company’s groundbreaking in 1992, the BMW Manufacturing Group has had a $16.6 billion annual impact on the state economy and also has supported more than 30,000 jobs throughout the state.
For more information on the BMW Manufacturing Company, please visit www.bmwusfactory.com.
To learn more about the automotive industry in Upstate South Carolina, visit http://www.automotiveinupstatesc.com or contact Business Recruitment Officer, Aimee Redick by email at firstname.lastname@example.org