By: Michael Lauzon
December 6, 2011
SANDY SPRINGS, GA. (Dec. 6, 3:40 p.m. ET) — Newell Rubbermaid Inc. plans to close its Greenville, Texas, plant next June, the firm announced Dec. 5.
“Following a careful and thorough review of our business, we have announced to our employees plans to reorganize our U.S. manufacturing facilities to more closely match capacity with consumer demand,” the company said in a news release.
Greenville has 490 full-time employees and is part of the Rubbermaid Home Products business unit. A spokesman said production will be relocated elsewhere in the United States but he could not specify where.
“This was a difficult decision to make, but is a necessary step to ensure we compete effectively in an uncertain economic environment while continuing to offer high-quality products made in the U.S.A.,” the consumer products giant explained.
Newell Rubbermaid will try to mitigate the impact on affected employees by providing transition services, working with government officials to access transition benefits, and by providing supplemental unemployment pay to make up the difference between unemployment insurance and current wages.
“We are saddened to learn of Rubbermaid’s decision to close its Greenville operation next year,” stated Greenville city manager Steven Alexander in a prepared statement. “For the past 30 years, Rubbermaid has been an important part of our community as well as one of our largest employers. The City of Greenville has been a strong supporter of the company and has worked with Rubbermaid’s management over the years to assist in their success through tax abatements and economic incentives.”
Newell Rubbermaid has invested in Greenville to move production there from other operations over the past several years.
Newell Rubbermaid announced in mid-November plans to realign its global business units by consolidating its current three operating groups into two: Newell Consumer and Newell Professional. Thirteen global business units will evolve into nine.
A recent report indicated Newell Rubbermaid plans to close its Wooster, Ohio, distribution center. Several years ago it closed its big molding plant in Wooster.