'Pleasantness' of North Carolinians convinces South Korean company to build PPE factory in Garner

GARNER, N.C. (WTVD) -- A South Korean clothing manufacturer is helping in the fight against COVID-19 by opening a factory in Wake County to produce surgical masks.

Seoul based Hansae Co. Ltd. is opening its first U.S. facility in Garner's Greenfield North Business Park.

The company plans to invest $2 million in a factory that will focus on making personal protective equipment (PPE) for the U.S. market.

"During these uncertain times, the access to PPE has never been more important," Garner Mayor Ken Marshburn in a statement said. "Having a company like Hansae here producing PPE will only help ensure that people around this country will have access to much-needed PPE products."

Hansae said it plans to open the factory before the end of the year and the operation could expand beyond the production of surgical masks.

"Opening our facility in North Carolina was an easy choice," Hansae Vice President of Strategic Sales, Hermann Chiu said in a statement. "The environment is conducive to establishing a business, and the pleasantness of the people in North Carolina has made the process simple."

Hansae plans to initially hire eight to 10 workers in Garner.

"They're helping fight the pandemic by opening a manufacturing facility that will produce PPE," said Michael Haley, executive director of Wake County Economic Development in a statement. "Hansae will join a network of over 700 foreign-owned firms in the Research Triangle region. This will further strengthen our international business community."
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