Today, Governor Henry McMaster, alongside leadership from South Carolina’s business community, announced the launch of CONNEX South Carolina, a free online platform that provides one-stop access to manufacturers in the state to connect with each other, find local suppliers, discover new business opportunities, and manage their supply chains.
The database, CONNEX Marketplace, allows manufacturers to create company profiles and include pertinent information such as certifications, Small Business Administration designations, manufacturing capabilities and equipment, and much more. The platform features an Exchange Center in which manufacturers can post and respond to business opportunities with companies in South Carolina and around the nation.
“South Carolina is recognized around the world as a manufacturing state, therefore, we must do all we can to provide our manufacturing industry with the advantages and resources needed to continue to build upon our sterling reputation,” said Governor Henry McMaster. “With Connex South Carolina, we will be able to provide equipment manufacturing companies like BOMAG America with the tools needed to optimize efficiency and ultimately help drive South Carolina’s economy to even greater heights.”
The CONNEX South Carolina platform is made available to South Carolina manufacturers, at no cost, through a partnership of the South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (SCMEP), the South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance (SCMA), and the South Carolina Department of Commerce. Created by i5 Services, CONNEX Marketplace was developed more than a decade ago to connect the United States manufacturing supply chain and enhance companies’ ability to keep manufacturing solutions locally sourced.
The manufacturing industry has a significant economic impact in South Carolina. A 2021 economic impact study from SC Future Makers revealed that:
- The economic impact of manufacturing on the state of South Carolina is estimated to be between $194 billion and $206 billion annually;
- Manufacturing supports, either directly or indirectly, over 30 percent of all jobs in South Carolina, making it among the state’s largest industry sectors;
- Manufacturing is a significant job creator with a multiplier effect of 1:4;
- 38% of South Carolina’s General Fund comes from manufacturing;
- And 16% of South Carolina’s GDP is associated with manufacturing.
Leaders from the state’s manufacturing community echoed the importance of strengthening the supply chain by connecting manufacturers:
“CONNEX South Carolina is a unique and simple-to-use tool that will allow participating South Carolina manufacturers to increase the resiliency of our nation’s, and state’s manufacturing supply chains. In addition, CONNEX South Carolina will deliver increased business opportunities for all South Carolina manufacturers that elect to sign up for this program.” – Andy Carr, President & CEO, South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership
“CONNEX South Carolina is an innovative resource to help manufacturers compete and create jobs. This one-of-a-kind tool empowers manufacturers of all sizes, both buyers and sellers, to enhance supply chain connectivity. This is a game-changer for South Carolina manufacturers.” – Sara Hazzard, President & CEO, South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance
“When it comes to staying competitive, having the right tools readily available is a necessity for our state’s manufacturers, and CONNEX South Carolina will allow manufacturers to further maximize the supply chain, creating more opportunities for citizens across the state.” – Secretary of Commerce Harry M. Lightsey III.
The South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (SCMEP) is a private, non-profit group that serves as a proven resource to South Carolina businesses, providing them with a range of innovative strategies and solutions. An affiliate of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), SCMEP operates under the US Department of Commerce to promote innovation and industrial competitiveness.
The South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance (SCMA) is the only statewide organization dedicated exclusively to the interests of manufacturers. Its mission is to strengthen and advance South Carolina manufacturing by advocating for our members, fostering a world-class workforce, and bringing together manufacturers to connect, share, and solve industry challenges. The SCMA membership is comprised of more than 200 manufacturing companies that represent more than 100,000 associates in South Carolina.
James A. Richter
Director of Workforce Development & Member Relations
South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance
1340 Bull Street | Columbia, SC 29201
(O) 803.799.9695 (C) 803.528.1288