Port City Logistics Inc., a leading East Coast third-party logistics (3PL) provider, will open a $16 million facility near the Port of Wilmington as it grows supply-chain capacity, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper announced today. The company, based in Savannah, Georgia, will create 75 new jobs here.
“We are delighted to welcome Port City Logistics to New Hanover County, North Carolina,” said Governor Cooper. “When companies are ready to connect with global markets, they are drawn to our state because of our workforce, excellent transportation network, and attractive quality of life.”
Savannah, Ga.-based Port City Logistics is a full-service logistics company providing a highly diversified customer base with warehouse distribution, drayage (i.e., first-mile shipping), brokered transportation solutions and over-the-road trucking. The company was founded in 2001 with a single warehouse. Today, Port City operates 3.5 million square-feet of warehouse space across fourteen distribution centers. Its distribution facilities feature 24/7 security and include Customs bonded, Foreign-Trade Zone, food-grade and e-commerce specializations.
“We are thrilled to expand into the North Carolina market so our customers can enjoy the benefits of the Port of Wilmington with the fastest turn times in the U.S.” said Eric Howell, Chief Executive Officer of Port City Logistics. “We are always looking for ways to pursue excellence and create innovative supply chain solutions and by spending time with the teams at the North Carolina Ports and Wilmington Business Development, we saw great alignment and knew Wilmington was where we needed to be.”
Port City Logistics will acquire vacant property on Raleigh Street, owned by North Carolina Ports, as it builds approximately 150,000 square-feet of cross-dock warehouse space. The property transaction was approved by Council of State. Additionally, an office location for its brokerage operations is planned for Downtown Wilmington. Newly created positions will come with salaries averaging nearly $65,000 per year, which will create an annual payroll impact of almost $4.9 million across the region. Company officials also considered Savannah, Charleston and Mobile for their latest expansion.
“We are excited to partner with Port City Logistics, Inc. to provide customers of North Carolina Ports and North Carolina businesses greater flexibility and increased capacity,” said Brian Clark, NC Ports Executive Director. “With a shared vision for the development of this near-port property, we look forward to working alongside this great organization. This partnership will help drive an increase of local cargo volumes, while further enhancing our local and state economies.”
New Hanover County and the City of Wilmington have committed a total of $112,500 in performance-based incentives in support of Port City Logistics new operations. The pledge is a match from the State’s One North Carolina program administered by the N.C. Department of Commerce.
Bill Rivenbark, New Hanover County Commissioner and Wilmington Business Development Board Member, said Port City Logistics’ announcement provides additional evidence that the post-pandemic economy is working in Greater Wilmington’s favor. “This is the latest move by a logistics leader that points to an exciting new facet of our local economy, which for generations has been North Carolina’s gateway to the global marketplace,” Rivenbark said.
In early March, MegaCorp, another 3PL (truck brokerage centric) company, announced it would add 300 jobs to its current operation in Wilmington over the coming five years. In April, Atlanta-based RL Cold/RealtyLink broke ground on a +$100 million cold storage facility at Pender Commerce Park that will facilitate the import and export primarily of food products. “New Hanover County extends an enthusiastic welcome to Port City Logistics and the jobs it will create here,” Rivenbark said.
“Wilmington is taking its rightful place as a major East Coast port destination,” said Wilmington Mayor and Wilmington Business Development Board Member Bill Saffo. “The city – along with our partners at the North Carolina State Ports Authority and Wilmington Business Development – welcomes Port City Logistics to Wilmington. This significant investment provides new employment opportunities for Wilmington residents and speaks volumes about the city’s success in cultivating a strong local workforce and healthy climate for business growth.”
Globalization and the rise of e-commerce have sparked rapid growth in third-party logistics. The global market for 3PL services had an estimated value of $957.3 billion in 2020, according to a study published last December by the market intelligence firm BlueWeave Consulting. The report projects that valuation to reach nearly $1.6 trillion by 2027.
“International trade and transportation have been mainstays in Greater Wilmington’s economy since the Colonial era, and we’re now seeing a 21st century version of this important legacy industry with the arrival of companies like Port City Logistics,” said Scott Satterfield, Chief Executive Officer of Wilmington Business Development. “Their business model leverages cutting-edge technologies, pays great wages and serves a market that includes top global manufacturers and distributors.”