PreZero US Inc. is closing a plastics recycling facility in Westminster, S.C., but hopes to eventually reopen in the region.
The decision is a stark departure from an October 2021 announcement that the company was expanding in South Carolina and investing $11.5 million to create 32 new jobs.
The company will focus energies on the firm's remaining location in Jurupa Valley, Calif.
"Our goal is to have a facility in all major regions throughout the U.S.," said Max Bracey, marketing manager for PreZero US. "We still have big goals for our operations here in the U.S."
Bracey said "it is certainly a disappointment that we're unable to continue with this site at this time but it doesn't change the overall trajectory of where we hope to go in the U.S."
The company is currently winding down operations and the doors will close in November. A total of 57 people will lose their jobs.
"It was not performing as we would have liked, for sure. But that's all we can say on it, specifically," Bracey said.
The move comes just three weeks after PreZero US named Clemens Stockreiter as the company's new CEO. He took over for Hernan de la Vega.
The former CEO, when the expansion was announced fall, said PreZero was "excited to be building our facility with the community of Westminster. We have been operational since 2019, and this is only the beginning. We have made significant investments into the region and we are happy to provide stable, long-term employment opportunities for the surrounding community that will allow us to grow together."
While the company has a limited presence in the United States, PreZero has about 30,000 employees in 475 locations in Europe and elsewhere in North America. The firm provides waste and recycling management. PreZero, headquartered in Neckarsulm, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, is part of the Schwarz Group, a food retail company operating in Europe.
The South Carolina location was previously owned by ACI Plastics.