In 2009, Boeing needed to establish a second final assembly line for its 787 Dreamliner as orders for the plane increased. The company needed a place with top-notch infrastructure, a business-friendly climate and a skilled workforce. With those things in mind, Boeing chose South Carolina for the project in November of that year.
“Establishing a second 787 assembly line in Charleston will expand our production capability to meet the market demand for the airplane,” said Jim Albaugh, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “This decision allows us to continue building on the synergies we have established in South Carolina with Boeing Charleston and Global Aeronautica,” he said, adding that this move will strengthen the company’s competitiveness and sustainability and help it grow for the long term.
In making the announcement, Boeing committed to invest hundreds of millions of dollars and create upwards of 4,000 new jobs at the facility.
Boeing’s previously established Charleston facilities were already performing fabrication, assembly, systems installation and integration for the 787 aft fuselage sections. The new facility joins this other operation.
Boeing is one among more than 100 aviation and aerospace related companies that have operations in South Carolina. Those companies employ more than 16,000 South Carolinians in facilities across the state. Some of the other companies that are part of the South Carolina aerospace sector include ATI Allvac, BAE Systems, Bracket and Cochran, Cytec Industries Inc., Champion Aerospace, Eaton, GE Aviation, Lockheed-Martin, Honeywell, Michelin Aircraft Tires, Nasmyth Precision Products, Northrop Grumman and Parker Aerospace. View a full list of aerospace engineering companies.
One of the important features South Carolina offers these companies is a highly-skilled workforce. According to CNBC’s “Top States for Business 2008,” South Carolina ranks second for its quality workforce. The state’s skilled workforce is augmented by readySC™, South Carolina’s nationally recognized workforce training program. Lockheed Martin Aircraft & Logistics Center, Michelin Aircraft Tires, SKF, Stevens Aviation, Timken, Vought Aircraft Industries and Global Aeronautica are among the companies that have utilized this exceptional program.