May 14, 2016
Autoneum North America began construction on a Powderhouse Road plant expansion that could bring 41 new jobs and invest approximately $35.5 million into Aiken County’s economy.
Motorists passing by the automotive component plant located at 1103 Powderhouse Road during the past two weeks have noticed extensive land clearing operations underway. What used to be a vacant 5-acre lot with a tall stand of Southern pines, has been reduced to tree stumps and mulch as land is cleared in preparation for the expansion project. Autoneum is expanding its existing Aiken County facility to 315,000-square-feet to meet customer demands, according to a news release.
Autoneum North America, a producer and developer of automotive components and systems for noise and heat protection, is looking to expand its Aiken operations. The company is headquartered in Winterthur, Switzerland, and operates 50 production sites in more than 20 countries, including Aiken.
Will Williams, Aiken Economic Development Partnership CEO, said in March the expansion of Autoneum was good for Aiken County. Before deciding on Aiken, Autoneum had considered two other North American facilities during the first quarter of 2016, before deciding on Aiken in March of this year.
“This is all part of our continuing efforts to show Aiken County to be a place where businesses can grow and expand,” Williams said in March.
Aiken County Council Chairman Ronnie Young said Aiken County is grateful Autoneum chose Aiken.
“New investments and jobs are things we work hard for in Aiken County and do not take for granted,” Young said. “We know Autoneum had other locations they could have chosen, but we are grateful they chose to expand here. We also appreciate the City of Aiken and their cooperation in making this project a reality.”
Gov. Nikki Haley called the company’s decision to expand in the county a “huge win” for the entire state.
“This $35.5 million investment, and the 40 new jobs it will create, is a testament to our state’s world-class workforce and the business-friendly environment we have worked so hard to create here,” Haley said.
Economic Development Partnership Board Chairman Gary Stooksbury said existing industry expansion is always appreciated.
“Autoneum has been a good company for Aiken County and we appreciate them choosing to expand here,” he said in a news release. “The Economic Development Partnership appreciates the opportunity to work with companies like Autoneum and Aiken County to make these things happen.”
Construction on the plant expansion is expected to be completed by mid-to-late 2017, according to corporate reports.