Study commissioned by Greenville Area Development Corporation finds GADC has had economic impact of more than $55 billion


GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA)- Over the past 20 years, the Greenville Area Development Corporation has made more than 300 announcements about new businesses coming to or expanding in Greenville County.

The GADC was created by county council in 2001 to encourage economic development.

Dr. Joseph Von Nessen of the business school at the University of South Carolina has been studying the group’s impact.

“We see a total economic impact that is far larger than just the spending of the businesses themselves that are recruited to the county,” said Von Nessen.

The GADC was founded the same year textile manufacturing dropped dramatically in South Carolina due to globalization. Data shows advanced manufacturing of cars, tires, and aerospace equipment helped the Palmetto State bounce back, with Greenville County leading the way.

“Growth in transportation equipment manufacturing has led to South Carolina consistently outpacing U.S. growth rates and has led to Greenville County itself consistency outpacing both South Carolina and the United States as a whole,” Von Nessen said.

He said manufacturing has been a critical force behind Greenville’s growth, but Greenville’s economy has also diversified over the past two decades.

“The diversified employment base really becomes important when we think about future economic downturns and insulating Greenville County against them,” he said.

He said for every ten jobs that follow a GADC business announcement, another 11 are created elsewhere.

The study found one in four jobs in the area can be traced back to GADC-affiliated activities and that the total economic impact of the Greenville Area Development corporation since 2001 is more than $55 billion.

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