HOLLY RIDGE, N.C. (WNCT) — UPS will create 98 new jobs in the Onslow County town of Holly Ridge, it was announced in a media gathering Thursday morning.

It was announced this is the largest economic development project for Onslow County in 40 years. Gov. Roy Cooper also made the announcement. A media release states the company will invest more than $12.3 million to locate a distribution facility in the area.

“The decision by UPS to expand in Eastern North Carolina is a tribute to our growth and our dedicated workforce which includes many veterans in this area,” said Cooper. “As the third-fastest growing state in the nation, global logistics leaders like UPS are eager to build in military communities like Holly Ridge that have the right people and the transportation infrastructure to reach their customers.”

(AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

The Atlanta-based company’s global logistics services include transportation, distribution, forwarding, freight, brokerage and financing. UPS will build a distribution center in the Camp Davis Industrial Park to support a higher volume of package deliveries throughout Eastern North Carolina.

“UPS appreciates the State of North Carolina for their support of this development project,” said Mark Smith, vice president of UPS North Carolina. “UPS manages our network with agility and a focus on service for our customers. The investment in Holly Ridge and surrounding communities allows us to meet current volume demands while positioning us for the future.”

The positions include drivers, operations personnel, managers, and support staff. Although wages will vary depending on position, the overall expected average annual wage across all job types is $67,657, which exceeds Onslow County’s overall average annual wage of $35,576. Positions for small package drivers feature annual wages up to $95,000, and more than 60 of the new job opportunities will be for drivers.

“This announcement is an outstanding win for Onslow County and the state,” said N.C. Commerce Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders. “I’m confident that our extensive transportation network, East Coast location, and capable pipeline of talent will support UPS’ growth strategy and lead to great success in this region.”

A performance-based grant of $250,000 from the One North Carolina Fund will help with UPS’ expansion to North Carolina. The One NC Fund provides financial assistance to local governments to help attract economic investment and create jobs. Companies receive no money upfront and must meet job creation and capital investment targets to qualify for payment. All One NC grants require matching participation from local governments and any award is contingent upon that condition being met.

“What a fantastic announcement for our community,” said N.C. Sen. Michael Lazzara. “We appreciate the diligent work of our local officials and economic development professionals that helped us prepare and solidify this win for Holly Ridge.”

“We are excited to welcome UPS to Onslow County,” said N.C. Rep. Carson Smith. “The company could have expanded anywhere in the state, and they chose our community to create new jobs and investments that will make positive impacts on our economy.”