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Gurit announces temporary lay-offs in Canada

By Charlotte Eyre
Posted 8 January 2010
Gurit says it is temporarily reducing its Canadian workforce by 125 because of a drop in demand in the marine and wind energy markets.

“We had a good fourth quarter but we anticipate that volumes in Q1 will be lower again, that is why we need make the temporary cuts,” spokesperson Berhard Schweizer told European Plastics News.

The Switzerland-based company hopes to recall some of the workers within two months and the majority in six months.

This is the third time Gurit has made cuts in Canada. Workers were also temporarily laid off in autumn 2008 and at the beginning of 2009, even though all staff were later rehired.

In October last year Gurit posted a 24% sales decrease to CHF245m.

At the time, Schweizer said the marine division was particularly badly affected because “marine is a market related to luxury goods, and high net worth individuals are not commissioning new boats at the moment”.

The company’s 2009 operational EBIT margin target is around 5%, largely thanks to cost reduction plans. Schweizer says Gurit has permanently cut around 400 jobs worldwide this year and is focusing on profitable markets such as Asia.

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