Dorchester Co. boasts record 2022 for economic development

Dorchester County announced nine different business projects and expansions totaling more than $406 million in investment in 2021.
Published: Jan. 4, 2023 at 3:55 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 4, 2023 at 5:31 PM EST
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DORCHESTER COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - Dorchester County announced nine different business projects and expansions totaling more than $406 million in investment in 2022. Those are record breaking numbers according to the county.

The previous best years of 2017 and 2019 each boasted six projects. The $406 million in investment beat the previous total investment year on record by $84 million.

The announcements also brought more than 2,000 jobs to the area. Director of Economic Development John Truluck says a lot of work goes on behind the scenes to make sure sites are prepared for businesses to come in.

“Some of that’s been going on for 10 or 15 years. So, you’re making sure you’ve got the ground fertile, if you will, so that some of these things do happen. Now, some of these projects can take as long as two, three years to come about. So, from the time you first, contact them till the end, but others, you know, come about in less than less than a year. So, no single project is exactly the same,” Truluck explains.

Truluck says his goal is to make sure people who live in Dorchester County can also get good jobs in their area which reduces travel time to work and creates a strong community.

“We think that’s a great thing. To have companies expanding here creating more jobs here so that people that are already living here have the opportunity to work here. And then consequently play here too. And while it’s great to be close to a lot of other amenities, it’s great to have that stuff in your own backyard. That also helps with things like traffic so that people aren’t having to crisscross the region to do different things,” Truluck says.

Looking to 2023, the county is already putting together ready opportunities for new business. He’s excited to get working on are ready to move in sites with buildings on them.

“We’re certainly excited about those nine buildings that was spec buildings that are under construction that mean I’ve not seen that many buildings in my 20 plus year career. I mean, one of the things we don’t have today is existing buildings for companies to come in. And everybody’s focused on time to market they need needed now. So, 23 will be a year where we can provide those now not just promises of those to come,” Truluck says.

The nine projects are:

  • Sportsman Boats Manufacturing Inc announced in March 2022 plans to expand its operations with an $8 million investment, creating 75 jobs.
  • BID Group, a leader in wood processing, announced in May a $10.6 million investment, creating 25 new jobs.
  • In June, ENGESER USA Corp, a world leading cable specialist, announced plans to establish operations in Dorchester County. The $1.5 million investment will create 26 new jobs.
  • New Wire Marine, announced in September plans to expand operations with a $1.8 million investment, creating 38 new jobs over the next 5 years.
  • Phenom Yachts, LLC, a subsidiary of South Carolina-based Sportsman Boats Manufacturing Inc., announced in October plans to establish operations in Dorchester County with a $12 million investment, creating 149 new jobs.