Bridgestone Firestone announces $33 million upgrade at Aiken County plant

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Bridgestone Firestone North America Tire LLC (BFNT) will invest "at least $33 million" in its Aiken County, S.C., tire plant over the next four years. The money will be used to add new production equipment as well as retool existing equipment.

Combined with its announcement in January of a $17 million plant upgrade, the company will be investing at least $50 million in the Aiken County tire facility over five years. Most recently, the plant added a new mixer, modified its tire assembly system and hired 36 employees (the facility employs more than 900 people).

"By investing more than $50 million over five years, we are helping to ensure that the Aiken County facility remains competitive in the tire and rubber business for years to come," says Steve Brooks, vice president of manufacturing. "Creating new opportunities for economic growth and community development is a significant component of our business structure here in Aiken County."

"Our focus on improving the state's soil conditions for business continues to pay dividends in terms of creating investment and opportunity in South Carolina," says Governor Mark Sanford. "With 140,000 more people working in our state than there were four years ago, we remain committed to pushing for further changes like workers comp reform that will enhance South Carolina's business climate."

"Companies realize in today's competitive global environment that making technology and system upgrades are vital to their ongoing success," adds South Carolina Secretary of Commerce Joe Taylor.

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