Industry Overview


Southeastern North Carolina has a cluster of metal product manufacturing companies that make a range of products, including steel coils, attic fans, aluminum fencing, grills, steel packing straps, metal buildings, pipe fittings, and nails.

Overall, North Carolina has over 150,000 people employed in metalworking industries. Community colleges in the region offer customized worker and classroom training in welding and metal fabrication and technology. Machining technology and robotics programs are also available.

While the largest industry segments represented in the region include sheet metal work and prefabricated metal buildings, almost all other components of the sector are represented. To learn more about the advantages the NCSE region offers, download our Metalworking Fact Sheet.

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Competitive Advantages


Workforce and Training Advantages

  • Metalworking companies in the region employ more than 3,500 individuals.
  • More than 100 metalworking companies have facilities in the region, a 29% increase since 2005.
  • NC ranks #1 in the US for National Metalworking Skills credentials.
  • 2 Community Colleges in the Region (Cape Fear and Fayetteville Technical Colleges) offer Machining Technology Programs.
  • 6 Community Colleges in the Region (Bladen, Brunswick, Cape Fear, Fayetteville Technical, Sampson, and Southeastern Community Colleges) offer Welding Technology Programs.
  • The Community College system also offers the general Manufacturing Certification Program with a level 2 & 3 focus on the metalworking industry.

General Advantages

  • Mid-Atlantic Location gives access to 200 Million US and Canadian residence in a one-day drive time.
  • Workforce that is 10% more productive than the national average.
  • The second lowest unionization rates in the country (4.1%).
  • Existing large metalworking cluster and advanced manufacturing workforce.
  • 2 deep water ports in NC and within 200 miles of the highest volume ports on the east coast (Norfolk, VA and Charleston, SC)
  • Free customizable training programs through NC’s Community College system at any of our eight Community Colleges.
  • Foreign Trade Zone 214 at the Port of Wilmington and Foreign Trade Zone 93 inland.
  • Highly competitive incentives and financial assistance.
  • Population growth at nearly twice the national average.
  • Quality of life that attracts and retains talent with a cost of living that is lower than the national average.
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Who's Here

Company Name Product County
Victaulic Pipe Fittings Brunswick
West Marine Docks Brunswick
Fastenal Small fastener manufacturing and machining Brunswick
Chrome-Rite Plating Chrome Plating Cumberland
Customcraft Metals Heating Ducts Cumberland
McCune Technology Retail Steel/Fabrication Cumberland
Kinston Steel Company Steel Fabrication Lenoir
Water's Industrial & Crane Machining Lenoir
Container Products Steel Containers New Hanover
Hercules Steel Steel Fabrication New Hanover
Therma-Tru Door Frames New Hanover
Wilmington Grill Metal Grills New Hanover
Cardinal Metal Works Metal Fabrication Pender
LL Building Products Ventilation Equipment Pender
Porta-Nails Nails Pender
Sentinel Fence Aluminum Fences Robeson
DuBose Strapping Steel Banding Sampson
Precision Tool Metal Stamping Sampson
Steel Technologies Steel Processing Sampson
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