US MeadWestvaco to cut 2,000 jobs, close or revamp plants

15 January 2009 14:40  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS news)--US packaging and specialty chemicals firm MeadWestvaco plans to close or restructure 12-14 plants globally, resulting in the loss of 2,000 jobs, or 10% of its overall workforce, by the end of the year, the company said on Thursday.

The cuts were meant to help address the economic challenges and uncertain environment facing the company, CEO John Luke said.

“Today’s actions, combined with our strategic focus on the most profitable opportunities in our packaging end markets, will help us further strengthen our financial position and deliver maximum value to shareholders,” he said.

“We have been taking aggressive steps over the past several months to help ensure we perform in today’s uncertain environment, and are poised to take advantage of the stronger, more stable periods that are sure to come,” he added.

MeadWestvaco expected the measures to yield total pre-tax savings of $125m (€95m) this year and pre-tax saving of $250-300m by mid-2010, it said.

Facilities to be closed or restructured included plants in Grover, North Carolina; Sidney, New York; and in Drunen and Uden, The Netherlands, the company said.

($1 = €0.76)

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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