Aerospace company opens location in North Charleston to support Boeing

Staff Report
Published Feb. 25, 2014

Everett, Wash.-based Kaman Engineering Services has opened an office in North Charleston to support Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner program.

Kaman was awarded a purchase order to serve as a stress liaison in the production of 787. The Dreamliner is manufactured and assembled in North Charleston and in Everett.

Kaman’s Charleston-area office will be at the Clemson University Restoration Institute campus. A team of Kaman employees will also locate near Boeing’s North Charleston production facility with additional support staff in Everett, Wash. The number of jobs was not disclosed.

Kaman Aerosystems President Jim Larwood
Kaman Aerosystems President Jim Larwood

Kaman has extensive experience working with Boeing’s 787 program structures team, according to a news release from the state Commerce Department. The new engineering services office will support the growing aerospace sector in the Southeast as well, the news release said.

“Kaman Engineering Services provides a unique, high-level engineering skill set and competency that perfectly aligns with the needs of Boeing South Carolina’s operation. ... We are pleased to be a part of the growing research and development community in the Charleston region,” Kaman Aerosystems President Jim Larwood said in a statement.

Bob Whitten, Charleston Regional Development Alliance board chairman, said the alliance has been in talks with Kaman for some time.

“As a Boeing supplier, the presence of the world’s most advanced drivetrain testing facility in our market, coupled with our educational assets, customized training programs, and our supply of highly skilled workers were critical factors in Kaman Engineering’s decision to be one of the first few companies to locate on Clemson’s Energy Systems Campus in close proximity to Boeing S.C.,” Whitten said in a statement. “This company will be a tremendous asset to our community for many years to come.”

Last week, one of Boeing’s largest suppliers of composite material for the 787 Dreamliner announced plans to build a plant in Spartanburg to manufacture its fibers, films, plastic resins, textiles and carbon fiber composite materials.

Tokyo-based Toray Industries Inc. plans to spend $1 billion — one of the largest initial capital investments in state history — and create 500 jobs over the next decade.

There are more than 200 aerospace-related manufacturing companies and suppliers in the state employing more than 23,000 South Carolinians, Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt said in a statement.

Kaman Engineering Services, a subsidiary of Kaman Aerospace Group, was presented with Boeing Supplier of the Year award for contributing to Boeing’s success in 2012. The company was one of 16 suppliers located in 50 countries to receive the award.

Kaman Aerospace Group is a segment of Bloomfield, Conn.-based Kaman Corp, which is a public company traded on Nasdaq. The company produces aircraft bearings and components; complex metallic and composite aerostructures for commercial, military and general aviation fixed and rotary wing aircraft, and provides aerostructure engineering design analysis.

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