South Carolina: Full Steam Ahead
Its east coast location coupled with friendly business climate is propelling South Carolina’s appeal to businesses of all sizes.
By BF Editors
From the May/June 2022 Issue
South Carolina’s business climate continues to gain momentum across its counties. Recently, DC BLOX, Inc. announced plans to expand operations in Horry County. The company will invest more than $31.5 million and hire several positions to operate a data center.
DC BLOX is building a specialized data center known as a Cable Landing Station (CLS) in Myrtle Beach that will serve as the landing point for subsea optical communication cables. It will provide power to the cables to regenerate the optical signal, host local network equipment associated with the cables, provide colocation space for cable partners and local businesses, and serve as a regional exchange point for communications providers. The new CLS will be anchored by a major hyperscale tenant with a new subsea system connecting North America’s Southeast region to South America.
The Myrtle Beach area is within two days’ drive of two-thirds of the U.S. population. (Photo: Myrtle Beach Regional Economic Development)
DC BLOX is a leader in providing reliable and secure tier III data centers and connectivity to businesses in growing markets. Headquartered in Atlanta, GA, the Myrtle Beach facility will be the second data center the company has built in South Carolina—the other in Greenville.
DC BLOX will purchase 21.12 acres in the Myrtle Beach International Technology & Aerospace Park. The company plans to construct multiple buildings, beginning with a 40,800 square foot state of the art data center, which will be immediately expanded based on additional customer demand. The investment includes over $31.5 million in its initial phase with a projected economic value to the region of over $400 million.
The Myrtle Beach facility is the second data center DC BLOX has developed in South Carolina. The company’s first data center opened in January of 2022 in Greenville and is already expanding to host a local enterprise customer. Available positions will be advertised at a later date upon completion.
Jeff Uphues, CEO, DC BLOX, said, “The Southeast is exploding with opportunity and investments in digital infrastructure are key to its growth. We are proud to announce plans for our second data center in the state of South Carolina with this new Cable Landing Station in Myrtle Beach. Our continued investments in data centers and fiber network infrastructure is a benefit to hyper-scalers, carriers, and enterprises across the region, and we are thankful to the City of Myrtle Beach, Horry County and the state of South Carolina for their tremendous support in making this project happen.”
Myrtle Beach: Strategic Business Advantages
Myrtle Beach, SC is strategically located halfway between New York City and Miami on the Eastern Seaboard, making it an ideal location to expand and grow a business. The exceptional business climate and superior quality of life, combined with a dynamic workforce and abundant resources for businesses, will provide a competitive advantage in the global marketplace. Horry County is one of the fastest growing MSAs in the nation. In 2020, the county’s population is 351,029 people, a 44 percent increase since 2000.
Accessibility. The Myrtle Beach area is a mere two days’ drive from two-thirds of the U.S. population, including all major East Coast markets plus Chicago, Detroit, and Dallas. Ten million people live within a 500 mile radius of the Grand Strand market.
Low Cost of Doing Business. The Myrtle Beach area offers a business-friendly tax structure. Utility rates are 25 percent below the national average; there are competitive wages for employees; and low unionization.
Aerospace/Aviation. The Myrtle Beach region is a prime location for the aviation and aerospace industry due to its extensive infrastructure and close proximity to the Ports of Charleston, Wilmington, Georgetown and Savannah.
The area is located just 90 miles north of the Boeing facility in Charleston and 75 miles south of the GE aircraft engine facility in Wilmington, NC. A variety of industrial properties well-suited to the aerospace industry, including ITAP, the International Technology and Aerospace Park are found in Myrtle Beach.
Advanced Manufacturing. Manufacturing is a growing and thriving industry in Myrtle Beach. With access to a well-trained, readily available workforce and an affordable operating environment, more and more companies are looking to relocate or expand their businesses to the Grand Strand.
Specialized workforce development and training programs are available in machine operations, C&C, welding, robotics, engineering, and more.
Technology. An abundant and robust telecommunications infrastructure provides an excellent network foundation for technology companies, corporate headquarters, and call center businesses. There is a large, adaptable workforce in Horry County with some of the most competitive wages in the U.S.
Horry County offers a variety of available sites and buildings that are ideal locations for technology businesses, corporate office or back office space.
Marine. With easy access to the ICWW and ultimately to the entire eastern seaboard, any business needing waterway access or use will not only find an ideal location but a talented and dedicated workforce. Additionally, its workforce development and education partners are committed to assisting businesses in development training programs to meet the needs of each individual industry.
The Bucksport Marine Park is a partnership among Grand Strand Water and sewer Authority, Santee Cooper, Horry County Government, and the Myrtle Beach Regional Economic Development Corporation. One of the greatest assets of this site is its direct access to the Intracoastal Waterway (ICWW). It is constructed on a 100-acre site adjacent to the historic Bucksport Marina located approximately 30 nautical miles from Winyah Bay and 30 nautical miles from Little River inlet.