Bicycles made in Clarendon County to be sold in Walmart stores - - Columbia, South Carolina |

Bicycles made in Clarendon County to be sold in Walmart stores

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Source: Kent International Inc. Source: Kent International Inc.

A worldwide bicycle manufacturer is building a $4.3 million plant in Clarendon County that will build bikes to be sold in Walmart stores.

Kent International Inc. announced the Manning facility is expected to create 175 jobs and will produce 500,000 bikes a year.

"Kent Bicycles will not only be ‘Made in America' but they will be made in Clarendon County, SC. We continue to prove that the Clarendon County's workforce is second to none and can compete in the world market," said Dwight L. Stewart, chairman of Clarendon County Council.

The South Carolina Department of Commerce says the MTD building on Greeleyville Highway will be converted for the manufacturing facility. The company expects to begin hiring this summer and start production in early October.

The U.S. production of Kent bicycles is part of Walmart's manufacturing initiative, in which the company will deliver the bikes to stores in 90% assembled condition.  It will save store employees time and effort by not having to assemble the bikes themselves.  Walmart announced it is spending $10 million on innovation in manufacturing goods in America.

Kent International is the third Walmart supplier who has announced a new facility in South Carolina since August  of 2013.  It also is a major supplier to Toys R Us, Amazon and Academy Sporting Goods.

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