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Greenville Business Magazine

The Business Narrative: SC Jobs Report

Oct 24, 2022 01:19PM ● By David Dykes

South Carolina’s Employment Situation September 2022

South Carolina’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased in September to 3.2 percent from August’s estimate of 3.1 percent, according to the state Department of Employment and Workforce.

But DEW Executive Director Dan Ellzey found positive news in the data.

“Wages in South Carolina are at an all-time high and the state is overflowing with job opportunities,” Ellzey said. “While unemployment has edged up slightly and employment has dropped, overall, the numbers have remained steady and strong for the last several months.” 

“So how do we move the state’s job situation from great to better? We start with the available job openings. There are more than 106,000 jobs posted in SC Works Online Services (SCWOS). You pair that with the average hourly earnings at $28.59, and you have an ideal combination for a jobseeker,” Ellzey added.

According to DEW:

The seasonally adjusted, monthly survey of households estimated the number of South Carolinians working decreased to 2,315,768. That is a decrease of 4,431 people over the August estimate. That is an increase of 35,534 people over the September 2021 estimate.

The estimate of unemployed people increased to 75,424. That is an increase of 903 people from August’s estimate and a decrease of 13,958 over the September 2021 estimate.

The state’s estimated labor force (people working plus unemployed people looking for work) decreased to 2,391,192 from August’s level of 2,394,720. That is a decrease of 3,528 people over the August estimate. That is an increase of 21,576 individuals over the September 2021 estimate.

The monthly survey of businesses in South Carolina marked an estimated decrease of 1,400 nonfarm payroll jobs over the month to a level of 2,240,900.

Industries that reported gains were professional and business services (+1,600); information (+600); education and health services (+600); financial activities (+500); and manufacturing (+100).

Trade, transportation, and utilities (-3,400); construction (-800); government (-400); and other services (-200) industries declined.

Leisure and hospitality marked no change.

From September 2021 to September 2022, South Carolina’s economy has picked up 91,100 seasonally adjusted, nonfarm jobs.

Industries with strong growth were trade, transportation, and utilities (+23,100); leisure and hospitality (+17,900); professional and business services (+13,300); manufacturing (+12,400); education and health services (+8,100); financial activities (+6,900); other services (+5,800); government (+3,200); and information (+2,900).

The construction industry declined (-2,900).

Arcadia Cold Storage & Logistics Establishing Operations In Dorchester County

Arcadia Cold Storage & Logistics, a specialist in modern cold storage solutions, announced plans to establish operations in Dorchester County.

The more than $70 million investment will create 69 jobs, according to the South Carolina Department of Commerce.

Arcadia Cold Storage & Logistics is a third-party cold chain services provider that focuses on handling, storage, distribution and value-added services for the food industry.

The company works to bridge supply gaps within the cold chain industry through modern cold storage warehouse development and services, Commerce officials said.

Located at Ridgeville Industrial Campus, Arcadia Cold Storage & Logistics’ new operation will support high-volume throughput handling services including a variety of value-added services, full pallet handling, case picking and transportation management.

The company will use the Port of Charleston to support both import and export trade. 

The facility is expected to be in operation by early 2024. Those interested in joining the Arcadia Cold Storage & Logistics team should go to the company’s careers page.

The state’s Coordinating Council for Economic Development approved job development credits related to the project.

The council also approved a $250,000 Set-Aside grant to assist with the costs of building improvements. 

Milliken & Company Commits to Net-Zero Future

Diversified global manufacturer Milliken & Company said its science-based net-zero targets have been approved by the U.N.-backed Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).

SBTi is a collective of international organizations dedicated to helping companies set emission reduction targets consistent with climate science and the Paris Agreement.

“At Milliken, sustainability is a core value,” shares Halsey Cook, president and CEO of Milliken & Company. “Climate change is placing pressure on communities, on companies and on our planet. The time to take meaningful action is now.”

SBTi calculates that companies committed to cutting emissions in line with climate science now represent $38 trillion — one-third — of the global economy.

Milliken is one of the first 50 companies globally to achieve approved science-based net-zero targets and joins a group of more than 1,300 companies who have made net-zero commitments using the 2021 SBTi Corporate Net-Zero Standard.

Milliken is the first company to be approved in South Carolina, where Milliken’s global headquarters is located.

The Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi is focused on accelerating companies across the world to halve emissions before 2030 and achieve net-zero emissions before 2050.

The initiative is a collaboration between CDP, the United Nations Global Compact, World Resources Institute (WRI) and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and one of the We Mean Business Coalition commitments.

ACL Airshop CEO Steve Townes Granted “Order of the Palmetto” Award

Steve Townes, CEO and founder of Ranger Aerospace and president and CEO of ACL Airshop, has been granted the “Order of the Palmetto” award by South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster.

The award is the highest civilian honor granted by the state. 

It was presented by the governor’s representative, State Rep. B. Cox, on Sept. 23, 2022, during the 25th anniversary celebration reception of Ranger Aerospace.

Townes has been instrumental in advocating for “Aviation High Schools” in the state to grow more aerospace/aviation jobs in that burgeoning statewide sector.

He was the first leadership voice from industry for such schools as the inaugural chairman of the statewide consortium “SC Aerospace” and a tireless multi-years advocate and champion for the workforce initiative.

These special schools give young people who cannot afford a college degree a clear chance at well-paid skilled trades jobs as FAA technical licensees in the hundreds of aerospace, aviation, and aero-maintenance support companies around the state and across the industry.

Five years ago, there were zero such schools, now there are nine, each tethered to one of the state-run vocational-technical colleges.

Townes has also been a long-serving employer and CEO of aerospace services companies here, and each underwent accelerated growth and substantial investments in people and training, resulting in aggressive levels of job creation and sustainable expansion.

His latest large-scale enterprise headquartered here, ACL Airshop, has support operations at 55 of the world’s Top 100 cargo airports, providing ULD equipment and technology-enabled logistics services to over 200 airlines in the global air cargo industry.

The company has more than doubled in size in five years, with plans for continuing expansion.

ACL Airshop also built a modern new manufacturing center in Greenville, S.C., in recent years, choosing to build and create jobs in the company’s legacy hometown versus outsourcing it entirely to lower-cost overseas alternatives.

Upon receiving the award, Townes said: “I am honored and humbled to accept this – it’s truly on behalf of all of our dedicated employees. People are the priceless soul of any successful enterprise, and we are proving that every day.”

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