Recently, Canadian clients came to Charleston on a prospective site visit for a manufacturing facility.
They originally contacted us via our website and we quickly responded via phone calls and emails.
We nicknamed the visit “Project Champagne” and began strategizing their upcoming visit.
After establishing some parameters of what they were looking for and their reasons for possibly locating to South Carolina, we promptly set up an itinerary for them. They were on a 3 state tour of North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas in which they planned on inspecting possible building sites, educating themselves on the economic climates of the areas, and gaining a general sense of the regions. Specifically interested in available industrial building or suitable commercial real estate; they were on a relatively short time line and expected to be in Charleston for about 30 hours.
At Charleston Industrial we value time as a precious commodity and were intent on maximizing their visit to Charleston. Both representatives of the company had never been to Charleston so we did want to give them a complete overview of the area without exhausting them. Here is how this relatively typical site visit went:
The First Day —
11 am – We welcomed the clients at the Charleston International Airport and provided them with customized tour books containing the itinerary we had planned, maps of the area, and information on potential buildings, land sites and commercial real estate in Charleston. We followed with a working lunch at the nearby headquarters of the Charleston Regional Development Alliance (CRDA). The CRDA is a not for profit corporation which aids in economic development and promotes business in the tri-county area. At this luncheon, the clients were able to meet representatives from the CRDA as well as from the State of South Carolina Department of Commerce. This was very informative for them as they were educated on all aspects of doing business in South Carolina as well as about the resources and economic incentives available to them.
1 pm – We toured a number of facilities, which were pre-selected to fit their needs. At one manufacturing location, we met with the builder who answered any and all questions they had about build-to-suit facilities. We also toured appropriate land sites on the Palmetto Commerce Parkway and gave them a general feel for the business environment in that area.
5 pm – After a full afternoon of touring potential properties, we delivered them to their hotel in historic downtown Charleston so they could settle in before dinner.
7 pm – We took our clients out to a wonderful dinner at one of Charleston’s classic low country restaurants. This dinner allowed them to get a feel for the way we do business at Charleston Industrial and gain a feel for the charms of the City of Charleston. Like true Charlestonians already, they chose to walk back to their hotel after dinner, further cementing the charm of downtown Charleston.
The Following Day —
8 am – We retrieved them from their hotel for a working breakfast at The Harbour Club, also in downtown Charleston. At breakfast we met with a representative from the Port of Charleston who gave them a complete overview of the shipping and logistics at the Port of Charleston. This meeting was beneficial for them and highlighted the unique benefits of locating their business in South Carolina.
9:30 am – After breakfast we toured more buildings and sites located on Clements Ferry Road and near the airport.
12:30 pm – We took a break for lunch at The Daniel Island Club. There, we offered them a quick view of possible living areas, and showed them where the entire staff of Charleston Industrial lives, works and plays. One of our Canadian friends really wanted to try some southern fried chicken and we think the DI Club has some of the best. He loved it!
2:00 pm – After lunch, we resumed our tour and dropped off our clients at the airport with plenty of time to make their evening flight to their following location.
In summary, we believe we gave our clients the best use of their time while also giving them a flavor of what it’s like to work and live in the Charleston industrial market. Time is money and we sincerely respect that when it comes to dealing with our clients. We were successful in out-shining our North Carolina and Texas neighbors as they have decided to place an offer on one of the buildings they toured while visiting our area. Let’s hope we can welcome “Project Champagne” to the Charleston area soon!