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HOW IT ALL STARTED
Arnold Kamler's Fathers Bicycle Company, Philkam Cycle Supply Co. in 1958.
In 2013, the Chairman and CEO of Kent International Inc., Arnold Kamler, decided to try to bring bicycle manufacturing back to the United States.
Kent has been business since 1958 and Arnold’s family has been in the bike business for more than 115 years and in operation for over a sixty years with Arnold being the 3rd generation CEO.
Having previously manufactured bicycles in the USA decades prior, Kent switched to importing bikes along with nearly every other bike company and closed their USA plant in 1991.
In 2013, we attended a Walmart Supplier Summit in Orlando Florida.
and there was a big push by Walmart. They asked their major suppliers to strongly consider changing all of some of their production back to the United States.
During this conference we met with many Governors but we were super impressed with the Governor of South Carolina, Nikki Haley, and she assigned several top aides to help us find a potential location.
We found a suitable location after 4 months of looking but this old manufacturing plant had one major problem. No natural gas for 5 miles and natural gas would be needed to power the factory including the modern equipment that would be needed.
One day later, Arnold received a call from Governor Haley and she said “Arnold, if I can get South Carolina to bring the natural gas lines to Manning SC, will you make a commitment to build your factory here.That was the clincher for our move.
So far we have made investments in building improvements and machinery of more than $8 Million and $5 Million more is planned for the next 2 years.
Governor Nikki Haley with Arnold Kamler and Walmart Sr. VP Cindi Marsiglio.
Governor Nikki Haley and Arnold Kamler review the BCA Assembly Line.
Bicycle Corporation of America's Manning, South Carolina Facility.
After 18 months, with so many things to do, BCA opened its doors in October of 2014.
We initially hired 47 local workers and started producing bicycles immediately. We trained every worker from scratch.
In 2017, we installed a 4 million dollar, fully automated powder coating operation. An additional 4 million dollars in robots and co-bots have been purchased and are currently being used in assembly.
We now have 145 employees. We are producing 20-25,000 bikes per month and are working on frame and fork building, which will expand our capacity to 50,000 bikes per month with only one shift.
Learn more about our factory below!
WE CAN BUILD OVER 1200 BIKES EVERY DAY.
Wheel building is the first step.
Hubs are laced, spokes are tightened and wheels are trued. Learn more about how a wheel comes together here at BCA.LEARN MORE
“I was a part of bike building in the 90’s here in the US, and I was also a part of the shift to importing bikes from overseas in the 2000’s.
To now work for a company with such a rich history as Kent International here in the US assembling bikes again is an incredible feeling.
The team we have in place, along with incredible support from the Kamler’s, are without a doubt the main reason for our continued success and growth at both locations.”
Mike Morrow, General Manager of BCA
Then assembly can begin.
Our skilled assembly specialists and technicians work in a fast-paced team based environment to skillfully assemble 1200 bikes a day.LEARN MORE
"I couldn't be happier to bring bicycle manufacturing back to the United States. The team we have down in South Carolina is fantastic, and I'm incredibly proud of their commitment to the product."
Arnold Kamler, CEO of BCA Parent Company, Kent International Inc.