Companies last year said they'd spend $3.95 billion building or expanding facilities across the Upstate, the biggest amount in eight years of tracking by the Upstate SC Alliance, the regional economic development organization.
The Alliance's 2014 capital investment total was the highest for its service territory -- South Carolina's ten westernmost counties -- since the Greenville-based organization began keeping records in 2007.
More than half of the total came from just two manufacturers, BMW Manufacturing Co. and Toray Industries, both of which made billion-dollar announcements for Spartanburg County.
While announced company spending rose, however, the number of announced jobs did not.
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The Alliance recorded 4,599 jobs in 2014, more than 1,700 shy of the eight-year record set in 2010.
Of the 60 companies that made announcements, 42 were manufacturers.
With U.S. manufacturing still in expansion mode, Alliance president John Lummus said he hopes the Upstate economy will fare just as well this year.
"That's an optimistic outlook, but I feel everything's going in the right direction, both locally and statewide," he said.
Figures out Friday from the Institute of Supply Management show manufacturing continuing to expand across the country.
The trade group for purchasing managers said U.S. factory activity expanded for the 19th consecutive month in December.
Its manufacturing index dropped to 55.5 last month, the lowest reading since June, but still in growth territory since any reading above 50 indicates expansion.
In Greenville County last year, companies announced more than $476 million worth of capital investment and 1,317 jobs, said Mark Farris, president of the Greenville Area Development Corp., the county's economic development organization.
The biggest corporate spending announcement came from General Electric Co., which said it would hire 80 for a new research center at its manufacturing-and-engineering complex on Garlington Road and spend $400 million more at the facility over a decade.
Alex Clark, deputy director of marketing and communications at the state Commerce Department, said it has not yet released its company announcement totals for 2014.
Included in the Alliance's $3.95 billion capital spending total for 2014 is $600 million that Duke Energy said it would spend switching the fuel used at an Anderson County power plant from coal to natural gas.
That announcement won't be part of the state totals because the Commerce Department typically does not count utility investments in reporting company announcements, Clark said.
Even without the $600 million from Duke, the Alliance's 2014 corporate spending total would have been an eight-year record at $3.35 billion.