Belk, the nation’s largest private department store chain, will invest $2.5 million over the next five years to make improvements to its distribution center in Richland County.
Belk plans to upgrade the Blythewood facility to meet future demand while maintaining its current employment level. The distribution center employs between 78 and 103 people, depending on the season.
“Belk’s distribution center has been a fantastic employer, and County Council is pleased to assist the company as it expands its operations,” said Paul Livingston, Richland County Council Chair. “It is always satisfying to see a business thrive and choose to grow in this community.”
The facility, which opened in 2000 in the Carolina Pines Industrial Park, supports Belk’s network of 300 stores in 15 states.
Belk CEO Lisa Harper said the imminent expansion shows the company is committed to Richland County.
“This investment reflects our continued commitment to the community and our confidence in Richland County’s workforce,” Harper said.
As part of Belk’s original fee-in-lieu-of-tax agreement with the County, set in 2000, the company committed to investing $9.2 million and creating 125 jobs by December 2005. The company exceeded that proposal, investing more than $13 million and creating 129 jobs at the distribution facility during that time. Council voted to extend the agreement for 10 more years.
With the announcement of Belk’s newest investment, Council has approved an additional fee-in-lieu-of-tax agreement that will last 20 years.