Solutia cuts nylon output, 1,600 jobs affected

21 November 2008 18:45  [Source: ICIS news]

Solutia cuts productionTORONTO (ICIS news)--Solutia is cutting production and jobs in its nylon operations in response to declining demand, it said on Friday.


A Solutia spokesman at the company's head office in St. Louis, Missouri, told ICIS news the measures would affect 1,600 of the 3,900 employees and contractors in the nylon business.


About 900 of the job cuts were expected to be only temporary, he said.


The steps were necessary in light of declining market demand for nylon intermediate chemicals, fibres and resins in the last several weeks, he said.


The measures, which included the shutdown of an idled plant in South Carolina, were part of a restructuring and cost-cutting programme of the nylon business  that was expected to yield about $40m (€32m) in annualised savings, Solutia said.


“We are taking necessary actions to align our production and inventories with the current economic environment," Jim Voss, president of Solutia’s nylon business, said in a statement.


"We anticipate that this will be a temporary situation, and we will bring these assets back to more normal operating rates as inventories decline and demand returns," he added. 


Cash outflows related to workforce reductions would be about $5m in total during the fourth quarter and the 2009 first quarter, Solutia said.


However, Solutia also said it remained committed to finding strategic alternatives for the business, including its sale.


The company announced in June that it was exploring strategic alternatives for the nylon business.


"The nylon strategic alternatives process is moving forward as planned, and we continue to make progress on transactional scenarios that would result in the disposition of these assets," said chief executive Jeffry Quinn.


($1 = €0.80)


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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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