SUMTER, S.C—Tire mold maker King Machine plans to grow its manufacturing capabilities in South Carolina, better positioning it to serve the robust tire industry throughout the state.
According to a news release issued by the South Carolina Department of Commerce, the tire supplier plans to inject $2.6 million into its facility, located in Sumter's Black River Industrial Park. The investment will fund the construction of a 50,000-sq.-ft., custom-finished facility and is expected to add about 30 jobs.
The project should be complete by 2024.
"King Machine is excited to continue growing in Sumter, S.C.," King Machine CEO Mike Wells said in a statement. "The support received from the Sumter community and Continental Tire, along with the support and expertise provided by Thompson Turner Construction has solidified our decision to continue investing and creating jobs in Sumter, S.C."
Continental Tire the Americas L.L.C., which established its Sumter plant in 2013, broke ground on an expansion project at the facility in March 2019. That expansion included an additional 29,000 square feet of manufacturing space for the production of ContiSeal and ContiSilent tires.
At the time, the tire maker said it expected the expansion to come online in 2020 and noted that it likely would result in an additional 50 jobs.
Continental represents only a part of the tire manufacturing in the Palmetto State. Bridgestone Americas Inc. (Trenton and Wilson, S.C.), Michelin North America (Greenville, Spartanburg and Starr, S.C.) and Giti Tire Manufacturing (USA) Ltd. (Richburg, S.C.) also are among the tire makers operating in the state, according to Rubber & Plastics News data.
Together, South Carolina-based tire plants employ around 12,500 workers and make about 110,000 tires each day, according to the Department of Commerce website, which notes that South Carolina leads the nation in both the production and export of tires.
"South Carolina is a global leader in the tire industry, and it's great to see that trend continue with this expansion by King Machine," South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster said in a statement. "These new jobs will make a positive impact within the Sumter community, and we look forward to seeing them grow and succeed in our state."
King Machine, established in 1951, makes tire molds and tire components for the original equipment and replacement markets. The company also provides mold services, warehousing, repair and refurbishment as well as consultative technical services to support tire operations.