Published Sept. 4, 2013
The announcement ends months of speculation about BMW’s intent to occupy the 413,000-square-foot building on property owned by the Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport.
The move is related to a BMW expansion of exports to emerging markets in 2011 that involved the BMW X3 sports activity vehicles. That “semi-knocked down” operation includes preparing vehicle kits for export. BMW announced that it will expand that operation to include kits for the X5 model along with the X3.
Josef Kerscher, BMW Manufacturing’s president, said that “since 2011, demand for the X3 from emerging markets has nearly doubled and we believe the X5 will follow this trend.”
Most of the parts and components shipments to be exported will be sent from the new rail container yard via sea container to the Port of Charleston 212 miles away. The company statement said Duncan-based Syncreon will continue to manage the company’s warehousing and logistics operations, preparing shipments of parts and components to markets such as Russia, Thailand, India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Egypt.
BMW’s existing 156,000-square-foot export operation is moving to the new $20 million building developed by Oakbrook, Ill.-based Centerpoint Properties. The first export shipment in the new building, which potentially can be expanded to 715,000 square feet, is expected in January, the company said. BMW plans to reload containers that arrive with parts at the plant and predicts that more than 9,000 will be used in the inland port in 2014. BMW’s statement said the plant at Greer expects to export to 140 markets around the world.
BMW Manufacturing, a subsidiary of BMW AG in Munich, Germany, has built almost 2.5 million vehicles in South Carolina since 1994 and has an ongoing $900 million expansion that is adding 1.6 million square feet of production and logistics space.
MAU filling 400 jobs at BMW plant
BMW begins manufacturing third-generation X5 in South Carolina
BMW, St. Jude Medical lease downtown space
BMW names new S.C. plant president
Developer of project near inland port looking for other clients
GSP’s land use plans could recruit industry