Samsung Electronics America, Inc. started commercial production at its first U.S. based home appliance manufacturing facility in Newberry County, South Carolina.
According to company officials, only six months after taking possession of the plant, Samsung employees have begun manufacturing ship-ready washing machines, producing the products’ washer cabinets, inner tubs and bases from blank steel.
visited the Newberry plant to celebrate the official launch of production, along with the CEO of Samsung Electronics North America,
"When we selected South Carolina for our new manufacturing facility, we chose a state and a community that believe in the power of innovation, and has the workforce to back it up," Hyun Suk Kim, President and Head of Consumer Electronics Division of Samsung Electronics said. "It is thanks to the strong partnership we enjoy that we are here to celebrate the opening of our first U.S. based home appliance manufacturing facility."
Samsung has already hired over 540 employees to staff the facility, 90 percent of whom are locally-based in Newberry County and surrounding communities. By 2020 the $380M plant will have created nearly 1,000 local jobs.
The company said its start of commercial production comes just six months after Samsung announced the company would open a new state-of-the-art home appliance manufacturing plant in Newberry County, South Carolina.
Since then, Samsung has transformed the site with the help of more than 800 full-time and contract workers, adding 151,000 square feet and installing two manufacturing and assembly lines with 20 presses and 30 injection molding machines. The two assembly lines combine Samsung’s made-in-house components with supplied modules, then package those products for shipment to U.S. consumers. Samsung plans to produce one million washing machines at the Newberry County facility in 2018.
In December, Samsung announced a new research and development partnership with the state of South Carolina, Clemson University and the University of South Carolina to create the Palmetto Consortium for Home Appliance Innovation. This R&D program will catalyze innovation, foster public/private collaboration, and nurture the next generation of advanced manufacturing professionals in South Carolina.
“As we begin commercial production of washing machines here today, our vision extends beyond manufacturing alone,” said Tim Baxter, President and CEO of Samsung Electronics North America. “Our ambition is for South Carolina to become Samsung’s U.S. hub for every stage in the home appliance lifecycle, from concept and R&D to manufacturing, quality assurance, distribution and customer care.”
In addition to its facility in Newberry County, Samsung operates a customer call center in Greenville, South Carolina, that supports 800 full-time and contracted jobs.
“I am extremely honored to help mark a momentous chapter in Samsung’s history as an American manufacturing giant that has been creating jobs and innovating here for nearly four decades,” said South Carolina Congressman Ralph Norman. “Samsung’s significant investment in South Carolina and in the domestic large residential washing machine industry symbolize hope and opportunity for all of us.”