Record-setting $2 billion investment has the potential to create 4,000 or more permanent jobs
The Richland County Economic Development Office is pleased to announce that (“Scout”), makers of the next-generation of all-electric trucks and rugged SUVs, has decided to establish its manufacturing operations in Blythewood.
The company’s planned $2 billion investment has the potential to create 4,000 or more permanent jobs, both of which would set new all-time records for a Richland County economic development project. Scout is planning to break ground on the new manufacturing facility in Blythewood Industrial Park in mid-2023 and begin production by the end of 2026.
“This proposed manufacturing facility marks a major milestone in the history of Richland County and the potential for our most significant economic development project to date,” said Overture Walker, Chair of the Richland County Council. “This decision represents a transformational breakthrough that would position us at the forefront of the clean energy future while promising to boost the quality of life for residents across our County for generations to come.”
The state of South Carolina and Richland County plan to make significant investments to infrastructure and roads to support this project. Richland County plans to dedicate funding to upgrade the Blythewood Fire Station. As part of the County’s incentive package, employees at Scout would be eligible for stipends to support employees’ childcare. Richland County Council is scheduled to give the package third reading on March 21.
“Richland County has spent years laying the groundwork for today’s historic announcement, and we are thrilled that Scout shares our view that this area is the ideal location for a world-class company to plant its flag,” said Jeff Ruble, Director of the Richland County Economic Development Office. “With our supportive business development network, vibrant workforce, culture of innovation, and connectivity to key strategic hubs, Richland County has created a strong economic foundation that Scout would be able to build upon in the years to come.”
Originally produced by International Harvester from 1960 to 1980, Scout was the world’s first utility vehicle capable of both off-road adventure and family duty. Building on that celebrated legacy, Scout will be making the next generation of all-electric trucks and rugged SUVs in the same tradition that made the original Scout vehicles an American icon.
“We are thrilled to welcome Scout Motors to the town of Blythewood,” said Bryan S. Franklin, Mayor of the Town of Blythewood. “This historic investment will bring thousands of jobs, economic growth and opportunity to our local community. We are honored to have been selected for this exciting new venture. We look forward to working closely with our partners, community members and other stakeholders to ensure the success of this project and to build a bright future for our town and our region.”
“We’re excited to be able to partner with the state and the county in attracting this wonderful opportunity for the region,” said Daniel Rickenman, Mayor of the City of Columbia. “This is what collaboration looks like.”
“We’re honored to partner with South Carolina to usher in this new era for Scout,” said Scott Keogh, President and CEO of Scout Motors. “Gov. McMaster is committed to investing in the state’s people, and we plan to bring new opportunities to grow this community of innovators. The world needs more Scouts, and this is an important step in honoring Scout heritage and electrifying its future.”