Hong Kong, March 3, 2001 -- Johnson Electric announced that it would close its electric motor manufacturing plant in Columbus, Mississippi, and transfer the production responsibilities to plants in China and Mexico. The closure affects 350 employees in Columbus, and is being implemented to gain efficiencies in an increasingly competitive automotive industry. The anticipated completion date is October 31, 2001.
The Columbus plant is part of Johnson Electric's Automotive Motors Division, which is headquartered in Plymouth, Michigan. The Columbus plant produced motors for applications such as anti-lock braking systems (ABS), and wiper systems. The Plymouth headquarters is unaffected and will continue to provide engineering and sales support services to North American customers.
Bill Johnston, General Manager of Johnson Electric Automotive Motors, said: "The decision to close the Columbus plant was not an easy one; however, we needed to respond to market changes that require a higher level of competitiveness. This can only be gained by consolidating manufacturing in our larger offshore plants." Johnson Electric's China manufacturing complex is a vertically integrated group of factories that produce almost every component required to build a motor. The production capacity of the China site is over 2 million motors per day.
The Johnson Electric Group is listed on the Hong Kong stock exchange and is part of the Hang Seng Index. Johnson Electric directly employs over 23,000 people in 14 countries, with the majority of the workforce engaged in production activities in China, Thailand and Mexico. Design engineering centers are located in Hong Kong, Italy, Germany, China, Japan, and the USA. The Johnson Electric Group provides world class micro motors and integrated motor systems to global customers in the multimedia, business equipment, power tools, home appliance, personal care and automotive industries. The Johnson Electric Group's QS9000 and ISO9000 certified facilities around the world manufacture products that exceed the most demanding reliability and safety requirements including UL, CE and VDE.
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