SUMTER, S.C — Tire mold maker King Machine plans to expand its mold plant in Sumter, positioning itself to serve the robust tire industry throughout the Palmetto State more effectively.
The tire supplier plans to inject $2.6 million into its facility, located in Sumter's Black River Industrial Park, to fund construction of a 50,000-sq.-ft. custom-finished facility that is expected to add about 30 jobs, according to a statement by the South Carolina Department of Commerce,
The project should be complete by 2024.
"King Machine is excited to continue growing in Sumter," King Machine CEO Mike Wells said. "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."
Continental Tire the Americas L.L.C. opened its plant in Sumter in 2013 and is in the process of expanding capacity there. The expansion includes 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 is one of several tire makers with manufacturing capacity in South Carolina. Bridgestone Americas Inc. (Trenton and Wilson), Michelin North America (Greenville, Spartanburg and Starr), Giti Tire Manufacturing (USA) Ltd. (Richburg) and Trelleborg Wheel Systems (Spartanburg) also are among the tire makers operating in the state, according to Tire Business data.
Together, South Carolina-based tire plants employ around 11,000 workers and collectively represent over 120,000 tires of daily capacity, according to Tire Business data, making it the nation's largest state in terms of tire production.
"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.
"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."
Charlotte, N.C.-based 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.
King Machine operates 15 manufacturing sites in the U.S. and Mexico.