Italian bearings company opening production plant in Colleton County

Staff Report
Published July 9, 2014

An Italian designer and manufacturer of ball and roller bearings is opening its first U.S. manufacturing plant in Walterboro to be near the Port of Charleston, the state Commerce Department said in a news release.

The $4.5 million Meter Bearings Group facility is expected to create 50 jobs over the next five years, Commerce said.

The company designs and produces ball bearings and cylindrical roller bearings, Commerce said. Meter Bearings plans to begin production at the 48,000-square-foot facility by September 2015. The Coordinating Council for Economic Development approved a $200,000 rural infrastructure grant for improvements to the property on Anderson Road where Meter Bearings will be located.

“Part of our growth strategy is to establish a manufacturing operation in the United States to reach our customers that already exist there,” Meter Bearings President and CEO Vittorio Musso said in a statement.

Proximity to the port played a part in Meter Bearings’ decision to come to Colleton County, the company said.

“Meter Bearings Group’s decision to locate in South Carolina is great news for Colleton County, and the SCPA looks forward to fulfilling their import-export needs,” Jim Newsome, president and CEO of the S.C. State Ports Authority, said in a statement. “Their announcement today is a reminder that our capable port system impacts every county across the state and handles cargo for businesses of all sizes.”

Meter Bearings Group was founded in 1981 and has manufacturing plants in Italy and China and customer support offices in Germany and the United States. The Commerce Department said the company is working with readySC to create a customized pre-employment training program, the news release said.

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