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“B” is for BMW

South Carolina from A to Z logo

  “B” is for BMW. The German upscale automaker Bayerische Motoren Werke [BMW] was founded in 1916 as an aviation-engine manufacturing company. In the 1920s it began producing motorcycles and automobiles. In 1992, Spartanburg County won a major recruiting battle when the company chose Greer over 250 other localities for BMW’s first auto manufacturing plant outside Germany. The decision was hailed both locally and internationally as the crowning achievement of the state’s Piermont campaign for international industrial recruitment. The Greer factory started production in 1994 by producing BMW’s 318i models but later expanded to a number of others. The company continuously expanded its factory both in size and production. By the first decade of the 21st century BMW had invested two billion dollars in its factory that covered more than 2.3 million square feet and employed more that 4,000 workers.

Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar receivedhisA.B.degreefromDavidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.