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giftedviz.com January 18, 2019


Ford plans to close plants and slash its workforce in Europe

13 January 2019, 09:42 | Austin Hogan

Ford to cut thousands of jobs in Europe

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The US giant said the moves would "strengthen" the Ford brand and create a "sustainably profitable business in Europe".

Ford employs around 53,000 people at its wholly-owned facilities in Europe - over a quarter of its worldwide total.

Ford's $14 billion global cost-saving plans includes exiting the minivan segment, stopping manufacturing of automatic transmissions in Bordeaux in August, reconsidering its operations in Russian Federation, and combining the headquarters of Ford U.K. and Ford Credit to a site in Dunton, Essex.

Jaguar Land Rover CEO Ralf Speth said in a statement: "We are taking decisive action to help deliver long-term growth, in the face of multiple geopolitical and regulatory disruptions as well as technology challenges facing the automotive industry".

Unite, Britain's biggest trade union said it was engaging with Ford in an effort to safeguard jobs. Like many other carmakers, Ford has warned it won't meet its forecasts for 2018, and Chief Executive Officer Jim Hackett jettisoned a goal to reach an 8 percent profit margin by 2020.

"Unite is positively engaging with Ford over its plans as we seek to safeguard jobs and look after the interests of all the company's employees in the UK". Volkswagen has said it will see an unspecified number of job reductions as it changes three plants in Germany to production of electric vehicles, but assures there will be no involuntary departures before 2028.

Foreign exchange rates, a softening auto market, and a fall in diesel vehicle sales have also taken a toll on its earnings in the region.

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Ford's Mr Armstrong said that pressure to build electric and hybrid cars had forced the carmaker to make choices about where to allocate its capital.

American multinational automaker Ford on Thursday, January 10, said that it would cut jobs across Europe as a part of its restructuring plans.

"This is not a effect of the Brexit situation", he said. He also revealed that Ford now plans to shift its focus to electric cars and said that every model will now have a battery-operated version.

The carmaker continues talks about a far-reaching alliance with Volkswagen in a deal that could increase Ford's manufacturing scale in commercial vehicles, Armstrong said.

The company on Thursday said it planned a major revamp in Europe, including job cuts to boost profitability, but did not specify numbers. Within the first nine months of 2018, Ford reported a loss of $199 million in Europe versus its $278 million profit in 2017 over the same time period.

Additional cost cutting could include the shuttering of underused United States factories, according to Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas, despite President Donald Trump's public pressure on auto makers to maintain their USA workforces.

"We will migrate out of the MPV segment", Armstrong said, referring to the family vans segment.



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