Protective packaging giant Sealed Air Corp. - famous for its Bubble Wrap packaging product - will cut 230 jobs worldwide in order to save $5.5 million by the end of 2002.
Spokesman Ryan Flanagan cited the pinch of a slow economy and uncertainty about the future.
``Slowing economic growth and the prospect of sustaining higher energy costs can help you sharpen your focus,'' Flanagan said in a July 27 telephone interview.
In addition, the company's food packaging business has been hurt by a decline in meat consumption fueled by worries over mad cow and foot-and-mouth diseases in Europe.
``The fundamental strengths of the business are unchanged,'' Flanagan said. ``We generate cash, we have opportunities to grow, and we've got a great organization.''
Flanagan said some cuts already have taken place, but he declined to reveal where and how many jobs have been eliminated. He said the cuts should continue through next year. The spokesman said one secondary facility located within one of the company's primary facilities will be closed as part of the belt-tightening but declined to provide details.
The Saddlebrook, N.J., company reported a 27 percent dip in profit last quarter, while sales were flat. The firm employs more than 17,000 in 45 countries. Sealed Air posted 2000 corporate sales at close to $3.1 billion, up from 1999 sales of $2.8 billion.