Posted on: Friday - Aug 25, 2017

On Thursday, LG Electronics broke ground on a new $250 million home appliance manufacturing facility in Clarksville.

LG plans to create at least 600 new full-time jobs to the area with the facility – expected to be the world’s most advanced washing machine factory. LG anticipates the facility to begin operations in early 2019. 

TNECD Commissioner Bob Rolfe joined U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and other dignitaries to celebrate the ground breaking of LG’s first washing machine manufacturing operation in the United States.

“The fact that one of the world’s most innovative and successful home appliance companies is establishing its largest U.S. home appliance operation here in Tennessee is a testament to the strength of our country’s business climate, the promise of our long-term prosperity and our exceptional U.S. workforce,” Ross said.

LG’s new operation accelerates Tennessee’s position as the leading state in the Southeast for home appliance manufacturing. Nearly 10,000 Tennesseans are employed in the appliance production sector, which is the second most nationally. On top of that, the 600-plus-job facility is expected to provide a significant headwind for Clarksville and Montgomery County.

“This truly is a great day for [the Clarksville] community,” Corker said at Thursday’s event. 

"Having been a mayor, there’s nothing more important to local officials, and nothing more important to any of us, than heads of households having good paying jobs,” Corker said. "And today, because of what this announcement means, 600 people in this community are going to have good paying jobs.” 

TNECD caught up with LG Electronics North America President & CEO William Cho on what attracted the global manufacturer to Tennessee.

Why did LG choose Clarksville for its first washing machine operation in the United States?

WC: Over the course of our multi-year evaluation, we looked at eight different states as possible locations for our facility. In the end, several important considerations made Tennessee the clear choice and best place for LG to establish our first major washing machine operation in the United States. 

Tennessee’s excellent business climate and skilled workforce were among the main reasons to establish this facility in Clarksville. LG was attracted to Tennessee because it puts us close to our customer base throughout the U.S. Being in Tennessee also gives us an advantage from a logistics standpoint that we couldn’t necessarily find elsewhere.

How big of a role was the local Tennessee labor force in LG’s decision?

WC: Our new LG manufacturing plant will be the world’s most advanced production plant for washing machines. It will be able to produce a fully assembled washer every 10 seconds. To make that happen, we knew that we needed to find a home with a strong base of skilled workers and future employees.  So the labor force component was critically important to our decision to invest in Clarksville. 

As we went through the site selection process, we quickly learned that Tennessee has a robust history of manufacturing. We found Tennessee has the skilled employees LG needs to ensure the success of our largest home appliance operation in the United States.  

When the factory is fully operational, LG plans to bring more than 600 full-time jobs to the area – that’s in addition to the hundreds of construction jobs already being added. We couldn’t have selected a better location and we’re grateful to the officials and community here in Tennessee for their outstanding partnership and warm welcome.

What does the future hold for LG in Clarksville?

WC: The groundbreaking at our new site in Clarksville brings us another step closer to producing premium LG washing machines in the United States.

We see this investment as a win-win-win for LG, the good people of Tennessee and our U.S. customers. And we look to future growth. We believe that the Clarksville site offers LG the potential to expand production to other home appliances.