Diverse companies – from startups to multinational corporations – continue to relocate and expand existing operations in the Charleston region.
October 29, 2020
Headquarters and manufacturing of COVID-19 rapid test kits
Established in 2019, Vigilent Labs provides unique solutions to the detection, identification and assessment of health and bio-threats. The company's team has substantial experience in the development of medical and bio-surveillance technologies as well as medical devices. Located at 1105 Truxton Avenue, Building 74 in North Charleston, Vigilent Labs' new operations will serve as the company's headquarters, which will include its East Coast production and manufacturing operations. Specifically, the company will work with its partners, SeroClinix and Leinco, to produce rapid COVID-19 antibody and antigen test kits. These FDA-approved and emergency use authorized test kits are cost-effective and will produce fast and accurate results in seven to 10 minutes. The new facility will begin manufacturing activities in December.
September 15, 2020
Headquarters, import and wholesale distribution, design studio and retail outlet for high-end dinnerware and home decor
Founded in 2001 by husband and wife David and Capucine Gooding, the firm will invest $1.9 million in offices, a distribution center, a design studio and an outlet store for local sales. The company is moving from Stamford, Conn., to its new location at 7991 Palmetto Commerce Blvd in Palmetto Commerce Park in North Charleston. The company owners said they have been visiting Charleston for years “and always dreamed of one day relocating our company here...[because] the historic architecture, natural beauty, growing business community and abundant sense of ‘family’ here are the perfect fit with our European heritage and brand values.” Also, Juliska imports its products through the Port of Charleston.
New, Expanding, and Mergers & Acquisitions
Baker Motor Company
November 9, 2020
Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Van dealership
This new facility, opening in December 2020 at 425 Sigma Drive, will be the first-ever standalone Sprinter Van dealership of its kind. The 28,600 square foot dealership, spanning over 13 acres, will be housed in the Nexton community and allow interested parties to customize their individual van or up-fit an entire fleet. The new site will also offer other luxury vehicles for purchase as well as capability to service cars from the Baker Motor luxury portfolio. Customers will have the opportunity to take advantage of all the perks the new facility has to offer, including biking and hiking trails, a play area for the kids and a fishing pond while they are getting their car serviced.
Defense Engineering Services (DES)
November 5, 2020
Technical, design and manufacturing engineering services
Founded in 2013, DES is a service-disabled veteran-owned small business which specializes in survivability, vehicle systems and mechanical engineering. The company provides technical, design and manufacturing services for government and private companies across the country, delivering technical solutions, test services, prototype fabrication and low-rate manufacturing for large and small projects. Located in North Charleston, the expansion of DES will increase the company’s manufacturing and storage capacity, while providing additional office space and resources for engineering and design team members. “We started DES in South Carolina and the friendly business climate has helped us reinvest and grow. Over the next five years, we are planning for steady growth both through federal contracting and our involvement with other thriving businesses in the state. We look forward to continuing to build DES and expanding our capability to offer engineering, design and prototyping services,” said managing principals Greg Gordon and Bob Cole. The expansion is expected to be completed by 2025.
ARD Logistics DBA Key Logistics
September 30, 2020
A Ladson company that provides logistics services for Cummins Turbo Technologies is laying off 106 workers, but that doesn’t mean they’ll be out of a job. ARD Logistics, which does business as Key Logistics Solutions, told the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce that Cummins “has decided for strategic reasons” to terminate its contract as of Sept. 30. All of the workers are expected to be hired by Cummins or another logistics firm working with the turbocharger manufacturer. “We are currently working on a transition plan to seamlessly move this work back to the Cummins organization or a third-party identified by Cummins,” said ARD Logistics officials.
Thrace LINQ Inc.
June 16, 2020
Mfg & distribution of geosynthetics and industrial fabrics with applications in automotive, construction and other sectors
The textile firm has sold its local property and moved its operations to an affiliated facility in Scotland, affecting 70 local jobs. Athens, Greece-based Thrace Group cited slowing demand for its products in the United States as one of the reasons for the move. A Boston-based affiliate of GFI Investors purchased the 563,154-square-foot building on 43 acres at 2550 W. 5th St. for $14.5 million, according to Dorchester County property records. The group plans to renovate the site with a new roof, parking lot, paint and rehabilitation of the adjacent Norfolk Southern rail site. GFI will rebrand the property as Eastport Industrial Complex.