Key lays off workers in France, Slovakia
FARMINGTON HILLS, MICH. Auto supplier Key Plastics LLC has entered insolvency for its French operations and is cutting jobs at those locations and in Slovakia, as part of a financial and operational restructuring plan.
The cuts do not affect other sites in Europe or North America, where the Farmington Hills-based company recently finalized new agreements with its key debt holders to secure long-term financing in North America.
``The global automotive industry is going through a period of historic change, and Key Plastics is taking the necessary steps to position the company to succeed in the dynamic global business environment,'' said Ralph Ralston, president and chief operating officer of Key's North American operations, in a Nov. 18 news release.
The company blamed the ``significant decline in market demand'' in the European auto market for its restructuring there.
Key molds a variety of interior parts including door panels, center consoles and door handles.
Nypro Hungary moves work to China plants
NAGYIGMÃND, HUNGARY Nypro Hungary Muanyagtechnika Kft. drastically reduced its workforce during the past year, trimming about 400 jobs as work was transferred to undisclosed facilities in China.
``About four months ago, we moved the electronics business to China and reduced the employment to about 100 it has been stable for about four months,'' said Al Cotton, spokesman for its parent company Nypro Inc. in Clinton, Mass.
Nypro Hungary employed about 500 a year ago at its plant in Nagyigmand. Many of those workers were laid off roughly four months ago. Nypro helped the displaced workers through an outplacement program, according to Cotton.
``Apparently many of the competitors have gone through a similar situation,'' he said.
He said the move came about in recent years as the telephone industry shifted production from Europe to China.
Nypro's plant in Hungary now is devoted to making consumer products and packaging, Cotton said.
Nypro Hungary was established in 2001 as a joint venture with Karsai Holding in Tata, Hungary. Nypro bought the company in 2003.
Celltreat moving HQ to larger Mass. site
SHIRLEY, MASS. Plastic laboratory product maker Celltreat Scientific Products LLC is shifting its headquarters from Fitchburg, Mass., to Shirley.
The 20-mile move was to be completed by the end of November, said Rich Happell, Celltreat operations director.
Happell said the company was formed in July and uses an undisclosed contract manufacturer in China to produce centrifuge tubes, serological pipettes and suspension culture flasks, as well as flasks, dishes and plates for tissue cultures. It primarily supplies companies in the biotech and pharmaceutical industries, and research personnel in academic settings.
Happell said the startup operation is relatively small, with five employees. However, the 3,400-square-foot location will provide room to grow, plus additional warehousing space. It will be located in Shirley's Phoenix Park, a refurbished 325,000-square-foot mill complex.
Happell said that the company provides a unique double testing of its product. First, it checks the outgoing product at the manufacturing site. Then, it repeats the process in the U.S., adding a certificate of quality.
Lear sells JV share to Toyota Boshoku
SOUTHFIELD, MICH. Lear Corp. has sold its share of its joint venture with fellow auto supplier Toyota Boshoku Corp., with Toyota Boshoku's North American unit taking full ownership of the operation.
Lear, based in Southfield, received $35 million for it share in Total Interior Systems America LLC in Princeton, Ind., which makes seats and other interior parts for Toyota Motor Corp.'s Sienna minivans that are assembled in Princeton.
The deal, announced Dec. 2, also calls for the two competitors to find and pursue cooperative ventures and technology. Toyota Boshoku, for instance, will consider ways to use Lear's ProTec head restraint system, and both companies will look at ``purchasing opportunities'' for commodities including foam, steel and textiles.
Lear also will continue supplying key components for Total Interior Systems' parts.
``While our companies remain competitors, it makes sense for us to collaborate on certain product, technology and purchasing initiatives,'' said Bob Rossiter, Lear chairman, chief executive officer and president.
Toyota Boshoku, headquartered in Kariya City, Japan, will continue operating the Princeton plant under the Total Interior Systems name, said company spokesman Warner Allen. The site employed 400.