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Columbia Business Monthly

Samsung Launches Second Production Line

Mar 19, 2018 03:50PM ● By Kathleen Maris

Just nine months after announcing the company was coming to South Carolina, Samsung Electronics Home Appliance America (SEHA) has launched a second production line featuring the latest in advanced manufacturing at the company’s first U.S.-based home appliance manufacturing facility in Newberry County.

“We are thrilled to now be producing twice as many washing machines in Newberry County,” said Tony Fraley, Newberry County plant manager. “This couldn’t have happened without a talented, energetic workforce, which we’ve found in South Carolina.”

SEHA launched its first production line in January of this year. The first line produces front-load washing machines and the second line produces top-load washing machines.

To date, Samsung has hired more than 650 full-time employees, with 90 percent of them local to Newberry County and surrounding communities. The workforce at the facility is evenly split between men and women, while the national average for manufacturing is only 29 percent women, according to a 2017 study by The Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte. Of the full-time employees at Samsung in Newberry County, more than 100 previously worked for Caterpillar, while VC Summer previously employed many of the nearly 1,000 construction contractors Samsung deployed to be up and running in six months. 

“We know our timelines have been aggressive, but the faster we are up and running, the faster we can employ nearly 1,000 people, which is our goal,” said Fraley. 

Samsung’s investment in the Newberry County site is the latest in a series of longstanding efforts to expand the company’s U.S. operations and deepen its connection to American consumers, engineers and innovators driving global trends. Ultimately, Samsung envisions the Newberry County facility to serve as the company’s U.S. hub for manufacturing, research, and development across much of the home appliance business unit.

SEHA also made two recent hires to their leadership team in Newberry. 

Thomas Komaromi will serve as the general counsel. He spent the last 10 years as chief in-house counsel for various GE businesses and most recently served as chief counsel and officer of GE’s nuclear joint venture with Hitachi and Toshiba in North Carolina. 

Sherri Satterfield will serve as director of Human Relations, EHS, and General Affairs. Most recently, she served as senior vice president of Human Resources for North America with Coats, a leading industrial thread manufacturer in North Carolina.