Charleston Post and Courier
May 1, 2001
ST. STEPHEN – Aerospace parts maker Acutec Precision Machining on Monday announced it will open a manufacturing facility in this small Berkeley County town and pump $2 million and 16 new jobs into its economy. Pennsylvania-based Acutec, which makes parts for Boeing jets and Bell helicopters, plans to build a 20,000-square-foot facility in the St. Stephen Commerce Park and begin operation by mid-September.
The company is locating here to service Parker Hannifin, a maker of fuel injectors that recently opened a plant in the Mount Holly Commerce Park on U.S. Highway 52.
Rob Smith, Acutec president, said his company hopes to support other South Carolina industries that require high-quality precision machining. “We feel there is so much potential for a company like ours to grow in this region and state,” Smith said.
Although Berkeley County has become used to much bigger industry investments, to a small town such as St. Stephen the promise of 16 new jobs is significant, representing almost a full 1 percent of the town’s 2000 population.
“The people of St. Stephen will do everything we can to make Acutec feel welcome and achieve profitability,” said St. Stephen Mayor Robert B. Hoffman.
Berkeley County Supervisor Jim Rozier said Acutec’s decision to build in St. Stephen is important because it spreads the county’s wealth of industry to outlying areas.
St. Stephen is located in upper Berkeley County just south of the Santee River at S.C. Highway 45 and U.S. Highway 52.
Acutec, which also makes components used in computer chip manufacturing facilities, was recruited here through the Charleston Regional Development Alliance.
“Acutec represents the high-skill, well-paying jobs that are buoying our region’s entire economy,” said Alliance Chairman William A. Moody, adding that 475 companies located in the state’s rural areas last year.
Formed in 1989, Acutec has more than 100 employees and annual sales of $13 million.