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Universal Forest Products to occupy spec building (copy)

Universal Forest Products owns the speculative building at the John W. Matthews Industrial Park's entrance. The company has also purchased North American Container, which has a plant in Orangeburg County. UFP is evaluating whether to move into the speculative building or to utilize the North American Container building in Rowesville.

Universal Forest Products owns the building and may locate its manufacturing operations at the facility.

A wood products provider announced April 3, 2018, it will invest $6.1 million and create 120 new jobs in Orangeburg County over the next five years.

Fortune 1,000 company Universal Forest Products purchased the 75,000-square-foot speculative building in the John W. Matthews Industrial Park. The park is located on U.S. 301 near U.S. 176.

In June, UFP purchased North American Container, which also has a plant in Orangeburg County.

UFP is evaluating whether to move into the speculative building or to utilize the North American Container building on Garland Road in Rowesville.

County economic development officials say the water and sewer lines have been put in place and have been fully paid for by UFP, which owns the spec building.

The company's commitment to invest $6.1 million and create 120 new jobs in Orangeburg County over the next five years remains in place.

The company will operate in Orangeburg County as UFP Cameron LLC.

In announcing its selection of Orangeburg County for new operations, Universal Forest Products Regional Vice President J.F. Granger said, "We are excited about this opportunity, which has been made possible, in large part, through the assistance and cooperation of the S.C. Department of Commerce and the Orangeburg County Development Commission."

"As the nation's leading manufacturer and distributor of wood and wood-alternative products, we are grateful to be part of UFP's continued success," Orangeburg County Councilman Johnnie Wright said. "We also want to thank Santee Cooper and Tri-County Electric for their vision in helping us establish a speculative building program at Matthews Industrial Park."

Orangeburg County Councilman Johnny Ravenell, whose district is where the company will locate, said, “We want to thank Universal Forest Products for investing in Orangeburg County and its people. We welcome you and look forward to a long, successful partnership together.”

“Orangeburg County is becoming recognized as 'the perfect place' for companies to grow even more successful," Orangeburg County Development Commission Chairman Kenneth Middleton said. "We pride ourselves in creating great partnerships."

"We are grateful for the opportunities that will be provided to our citizens and the value that UFP will add to our community," said Harold Young, Orangeburg County administrator.

Universal Forest Products' decision also brought praise from state leaders.

"As we continue to work to make South Carolina the best place to do business, we are encouraged by global companies like Universal Forest Products that choose to come here. We're grateful for this new partnership and look forward to strengthening it in the years to come," Gov. Henry McMaster said.

"Manufacturing continues to be a source of wealth creation throughout our state," State Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt said. "Universal Forest Products' investment adds to South Carolina's manufacturing portfolio, and I'm excited to see what the future has in store for this new partnership."

Universal Forest Products Inc. is a nearly $4 billion public company (NASDAQ: UFPI) that was founded in 1955 and supplies the retail, industrial and construction markets. The firm has approximately 130 facilities in Asia, Australia, Europe and North America.

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Contact the writer: gzaleski@timesanddemocrat.com or 803-533-5551. Check out Zaleski on Twitter at @ZaleskiTD.

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Staff Writer

Gene Zaleski is a reporter/staff writer with The Times and Democrat.

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