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Ford is reorganising its European business – cutting 12000 jobs
Ford is launching a new business model and fresh vehicle line-up as part of the most comprehensive redesign in the history of its business in Europe. Something that will also result in the closure or sale of plants.
The company says in a press release that it is on track to significantly improve its financial results in Europe this year, paving the way to sustainable profitability. “Ford will be a more targeted business in Europe, consistent with the company’s global redesign, generating higher returns through our focus on customer needs and a lean structure,” says Stuart Rowley, president, Ford of Europe. “Implementing our new strategy quickly enables us to invest and grow our leading commercial vehicle business and provide customers with more electrified vehicles, SUVs, exciting performance derivatives and iconic imported models.” The new European operating model and resulting organisation are effective July 1. Three new business groups – Commercial Vehicles (CVs), Passenger Vehicles (PVs) and Imports – are established to speed up decision-making centred on customer needs. Each has a dedicated management organisation including leaders responsible for marketing, manufacturing and product development. Ford also says that it is freshening and expanding its vehicle line-up in Europe, introducing at least three new nameplates in the next five years, including the all-new Mustang-inspired fully electric performance utility. And every new Ford passenger vehicle nameplate will include an electrified option. “Our future is rooted in electrification,” added Rowley. “We are electrifying across our portfolio, providing all of our customers with more accessible vehicle options that are fun to drive, have improved fuel economy and are better for our environment.” But all these action will have consequences. The company says that the foundation of this new operating model in Europe is a broad-based efficiency improvement program designed to support the new business groups. Manufacturing efficiency is going to be improved through previously announced proposed or confirmed closures or sales of six assembly and component manufacturing plants by the end of next year. The Bridgend Engine Plant in South Wales is proposed to be sold; the Ford Aquitaine Industries Transmission Plant in France is being shut down; as is the Naberezhnye Chelny Assembly, St. Petersburg Assembly and Elabuga Engine Plant in Russia; the Kechnec Transmission Plant in Slovakia is being sold to Maga. As a result, Ford’s manufacturing footprint in Europe will be reduced to a proposed 18 facilities by the end of 2020, from 24 at the beginning of 2019. In the U.K., the Ford of Britain and Ford Credit Europe headquarters in Warley also will close later this year and operations consolidated in Dunton. In addition, Ford is implementing shift reductions at its assembly plants in Saarlouis, Germany, and Valencia, Spain, as well as a more streamlined management structure and marketing and sales operations. In total, approximately 12’000 jobs will be impacted at Ford’s wholly owned facilities and consolidated joint ventures in Europe by the end of 2020, primarily through voluntary separation programs. Around 2’000 of those are salaried positions, which are included among the 7’000 salaried positions Ford is reducing globally.
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