New facility is expected to create 70 new jobs
COLUMBIA, SC, Oct. 31, 2011 /PRNewswire/ - Scio Diamond Technology Corporation (OTCBB: SCIO) today announced plans to establish its new corporate headquarters and manufacturing operations in Greenville County. The new operations are expected to generate 70 new jobs over the next five years.
Scio Diamond employs a patent-protected chemical deposition process to produce high-quality, single-crystal diamonds in a controlled laboratory setting, with such diamonds referred to as "lab-grown" or cultivated diamonds. The diamonds have the identical chemical, physical and optical properties as any diamond found in the earth, and the company's highly controlled manufacturing process enables it to produce very high-quality, high-purity, single-crystal colorless, near colorless and fancy colored diamonds.
"Before deciding to locate here in South Carolina, we considered several locations for our corporate headquarters and manufacturing facility," said Joseph Lancia, president and CEO of Scio Diamond Technology Corporation. "We are pleased to move forward with plans to establish our home here in Greenville County. It was right here that we found the ideal balance of business-friendly climate, access to talent, entrepreneurial drive and exceptional quality of life. We expect that Greenville County will provide us with the perfect mix of ingredients for success."Scio is in process of upfitting a 9,300-square-foot section of the NEXT Innovation Center development, at the corner of Church Street and University Ridge, which already houses a variety of entrepreneurial organizations and technology companies. More than 6,000 square feet will be dedicated to a secure manufacturing facility, providing sufficient space for 18 to 20 diamond growing reactors, supporting equipment, plus laser and polishing operations. "Today's announcement is another indication that South Carolina is a highly-competitive location for businesses to set up shop. We celebrate Scio's decision to locate its new operations in Greenville and create 70 well-paying jobs," said Gov. Nikki Haley. The relocation of equipment and operations from its current Boston, Massachusetts home is expected to begin early in first quarter 2012, noted Lancia. Growing reactors will be going through testing and maintenance until they are shipped to their new Greenville home, and machines will be hooked up and recalibrated upon arrival. The facility plans to come fully online and into the growing and production process by second quarter of 2012, he added. "In South Carolina, we are great at making things and manufacturing continues to play a crucial role in our state's economy. Announcements like this further strengthen our reputation in the manufacturing sector," said Bobby Hitt, Secretary of Commerce. The facility will focus on maximizing production yield of diamonds for a variety of uses and applications, according to Scio Chief Operating Officer Mike McMahon. "Our ability to manufacture diamonds that meet the needs of both the gemstone market and for industry in a wide range of verticals is very exciting," McMahon added. "From medical equipment to manufacturing, advanced materials to water purification, the applications for Scio diamonds are perhaps limited only by our production capacity and our imaginations." Current development projects utilizing Scio's diamond materials include applications with lasers, in quantum communication and computing, in high-voltage power switching, and with water treatment and purification systems, Lancia noted. The company has even created a diamond laser scalpel for use in surgery.
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