Robert Underwood, business professor at Furman University, speaks to ABC News about the impact of foreign direct investment, specifically, the opening of the BMW manufacturing facility 25 years ago in Upstate South Carolina. Based in Greer, the plant employs 11,000 people and is BMW’s only assembly facility in the U.S., churning out over 350,000 X Series vehicles in 2018.
Commenting on the positive outcomes of BMW’s presence in the region, Underwood cites a time when nearby Greenville wasn’t the destination spot it is today. “Now it’s flourishing and the local economy is stronger,” he said. “BMW’s investment came at a critical time for South Carolina. It’s a great illustration of the merits of globalization.”