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Logistics firm expanding SC operations to serve Volvo Cars

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Kontane Logistics is opening a warehouse and distribution center in Summerville to provide parts for the Volvo Cars campus off Interstate 26, where the automaker builds S60 sedans. David Wren/Staff/File

A third-party warehouse and industrial packaging firm is expanding its Charleston-area presence with a Summerville site that will be used for tire and wheel assembly for the Volvo Cars plant near Ridgeville.

The Kontane Logistics Inc. facility at 830 Drop Off Drive, just off Interstate 26, will employ 30 workers.

It's the second automotive-related announcement in recent months for Kontane, which said in October that it will provide "just in time" parts delivery for the Mercedes-Benz Vans plant in North Charleston. That Kontane site in Palmetto Commerce Park is expected to generate 50 jobs.

"The growth of the automotive industry in the South Carolina Lowcountry has been tremendous over the past five years," Rusty Byrd, chief operations officer for Kontane Logistics, said in a statement.

He added the company's "proximity to these automotive plants, along with our extensive experience in the industry, have allowed us to provide a vital and timely service."

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The Volvo Cars plant off Interstate 26 is located about 10 minutes from the new Kontane warehouse site. Volvo builds the S60 sedan at the $1.1 billion manufacturing campus.

Gov. Henry McMaster said the expansion is an example of how residents "continue to benefit from the growing automotive industry in our state." The industry generates roughly $27 billion a year and employs 72,000 workers statewide.

Kontane was founded in 1975 as a manufacturer of wooden storage containers used by the moving industry and freight forwarders. By the mid-1980s, the company had become one of the leading packaging designers and suppliers in the Southeast.

Kontane also provides sub-assembly work, packaging and parts delivery for a variety of manufacturers. Kontane's headquarters is at a warehouse and distribution center on Charleston Regional Parkway, and the company has facilities in North Carolina, Alabama and Texas.

Reach David Wren at 843-937-5550 or on Twitter at @David_Wren_

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