(NEWBERRY COUNTY, S.C.) – One year ago today, Samsung reached an agreement with the State of South Carolina to open a $380 million dollar state-of-art home appliance manufacturing plant in Newberry County. With the teamwork of more than 650 people, this facility began producing, in less than a year, front-load and top-load washing machines.
“The last twelve months have been exciting, challenging and rewarding for Samsung,” said Joon So, President of Samsung Electronics Home Appliances America (SEHA). “With the warm welcome and assistance of South Carolina’s leaders and talented workforce, we have launched production of highly innovative washing machines at our state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Newberry County. This further reaffirms Samsung’s ongoing commitment to expand within the United States and deepens our relationships with partners who drive global trends in consumer electronics.”
Since the June 28, 2017 announcement, Samsung immediately began working with South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster and readySC to develop a workforce training program. SEHA participated in numerous job fairs and has since hired and trained more than 650 employees. Of those employees, 90% are local to Newberry County and immediately surrounding counties and numerous employees came from the former Caterpillar plant in Newberry County and the former V.C. Summer project. By 2020, Samsung expects to employ 1,000 people.
In the six months following the landmark announcement, the Samsung team added 150,000 square feet to the former Caterpillar facility, dug into the floor removing 22,000 cubic yards of dirt and replacing it with more than 20,000 cubic yards of cement and rebar, and successfully installed the first washing machine production line. In January 2018, the newly renovated facility commenced commercial production and team members quickly began manufacturing four models of front loading washing machines in multiple colors. Then three months later, in March 2018, the Newberry County team launched a second production line producing top-load washing machines.
“Despite this rapid pace, our Newberry County team has found time to get involved in our community and state,” said Mr. So. “Our company is fully engaged, and as active partners in the improvement of our community, we are proud to support our local employee base and the citizens of South Carolina at large.”
As a company that rose from the ashes of the Korean War, Samsung strives to honor the sacrifice of American veterans and active military. Since locating in South Carolina, Samsung has supported Harvest Hope Food Bank by delivering shelf-stable food to local veterans in need, through the Pack 2 Feed program. Samsung has also began an annual tradition of partnering with the local American Legion Posts 24 and 219 to hold a thank you lunch for local Newberry County veterans and their family members after the local Veteran’s Day parade in November.
Samsung has also assisted other local community organizations including the Newberry Chamber of Commerce, United Way of the Midlands, City of Newberry Fire Department, Benedict College, Boys Farm, Celebrate Freedom Foundation, the Newberry County Sheriff’s Department and many more.