3D Systems expansion in Rock Hill to create 145 jobs

dworthinton@heraldonline.comOctober 26, 2013 

3-d printers made by 3D Systems can make prototypes for a variety, such as these bright red sandals on display the company’s Rock Hill headquarters and production facility. 3D Systems is investing $10 million in an expansion that will create 145 jobs.

DON WORTHINGTON — dworthington@heraldonline.com

3D Systems of Rock Hill officially announced its expansion plans Friday, a $10 million investment that will result in 145 new jobs.

The Herald reported the expansion on Oct. 4, based on an application for property tax relief filed with the York County Council. The fee-in-lieu tax application was based on a $10.9 million dollar investment, creating 133 jobs. According to a proposed fee-in-lieu-of-tax agreement, 3D Systems would complete the expansion by 2018. The employees’ average salary would be $35,000.

3D Systems, which is located in the Waterford Business Park, has developed and now builds computer-controlled 3-D printers which precisely apply soft or hard plastics, or reinforced composite materials, to create objects. 3D Systems is not only developing the technology, but also offering content-to-print solutions for a variety of industries from aerospace to health care to transportation.

The company is one of the fastest-growing technology firms, listed fourth on Forbes’ list and fifth on Fortune’s. Sales top $354 million annually, and the company is worth $4 billion on the New York Stock Exchange. Its sales have increased 46 percent over the past three years.

“We are excited about the opportunity to expand our production capacity and services to our customers,” said Avi Reichental, president and CEO of 3D Systems. “Rock Hill has been the perfect fit for our business, and we look forward to continuing to grow here. We appreciate all the support we’ve received from state and local officials.”

Bobby Hitt, the state’s secretary of commerce, said Friday that 3D Systems’ announcement “provides another boost to our state’s manufacturing renaissance, and adds to our reputation in the advanced manufacturing sector. Every one of these new jobs will have an impact in Rock Hill and beyond.”

Britt Blackwell, chairman of the York County Council said, “3D Systems represents the very latest in technological achievement, and we are excited about their continued commitment to our community. “We hope to experience many more benchmarks with 3D Systems as they continue to set the standard in 3D printing.”

The fee-in-lieu tax agreement being considered by the York County Council would set the company’s tax rate at 6 percent. Typically, such agreements reduce a company’s property tax bill by 43 percent for 30 years.

“3D Systems has been a valuable partner since joining the Rock Hill community,” said Rock Hill Mayor Doug Echols. “We’re honored they continue to grow their business here, contributing high quality, high paying, high tech jobs. We’re proud to be offering an atmosphere in Rock Hill that positions companies like 3D Systems for ongoing success.”

The state’s Coordinating Council for Economic Development approved job development credits for the new positions.

3D Systems’ printers can create one-of-a-kind parts, or the same part over and over. That’s the beauty of 3-D printing, Reichental said in an interview with The Herald recently. With a tweak of a computer program, you create custom material. Creating prototypes for all kinds of industries is simpler, quicker and cheaper, he said.

The company makes small consumer machines called the Cube, which sell for $1,299 at retailers such as Staples to larger, and more expensive machines used in a variety of industries.

The Rock Hill location has three-dimensional printers which make projects for customers, workers who make the printers, and the company’s research and development offices.

Don Worthington •  803-329-4066

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