Producing Products for the World

Advanced manufacturing represents nearly 11 percent of the workforce in the Savannah MSA, contributing to a payroll of more than $1.4 billion. Savannah’s broad advanced manufacturing base includes 274 manufacturers, employing approximately 17,250 and creating a $3.6 billion in output in 2015. A few of the manufacturers located in Chatham County include industry leaders such as Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation, Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Americas, Inc. and JCB, Inc. who recently announced that the U.S. Army placed a $142 million order for JCB machines. Click here for a complete list of our leading manufacturing employers.

Companies in the Savannah area benefit from the city’s superior infrastructure, which includes the Port of Savannah. The port, the second largest on the East and Gulf coasts and the fastest growing in the nation, features two deepwater terminals and gives companies fast and easy access to 44 percent of U.S. consumers and manufacturers and 70 percent of the U.S. population within two days. The city also features two Class I railroads, easy and immediate access to major highway systems, and an international airport. The city’s outstanding infrastructure was recognized by Logistics Today, which named Savannah “the most logistics friendly city in the nation” three years in a row.  

Savannah’s workforce is another major draw for the advanced manufacturing sector. Within 60 miles of Savannah, there is a labor pool of nearly 425,000. Though the Savannah area enjoys a relatively low unemployment rate, the underemployment rate is high, leading to an influx of skilled workers seeking greater job opportunities.
 
The area’s talent pipeline includes 19 area colleges and universities that have nearly 60,000 students, graduating 13,500 students each year.
 
Advanced manufacturing companies in the Savannah area can take advantage of training programs such as Quick Start, a high-quality, no-cost training service available to new or expanding businesses in Georgia. By 2018, Quick Start will be operating a new training center for advanced manufacturing at the crossroads of I-16 and I-95 in Savannah.

Manufacturers seeking workers with specific skills can utilize the resources at Savannah Technical College, which offers nearly 150 different instructional programs in aviation technology, business, public service, industrial technology, health sciences and more.
 
Many advanced manufacturers in the Savannah area have benefited from Herty Advanced Materials Development Center, a part of Georgia Southern University. The world-class research and development facility, which supports the non-wovens, pulp and paper, and bio-based materials industries, has produced materials for Fortune 500 chemicals and materials companies such as DuPont.

Savannah area manufacturers can take advantage of Foreign Trade Zone 104, which provides a secure, efficient and profitable way for businesses to compete effectively in domestic and global markets.
 
The Savannah Economic Development Authority works with Savannah’s manufacturers, connecting companies with unique incentives that may be available in their target industry. SEDA also can help companies find the perfect location for their advanced manufacturing operations, from shovel-ready sites to large existing facilities with millions of square feet of industrial space. 

Did You Know?

Georgia Southern University has the only undergraduate Manufacturing Engineering degree program in the Southeast United States.