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Brunswick to shut down Sea Ray facility

By IBI Magazine

Brunswick today announced it will mothball its Sea Ray Riverview plant near Knoxville, Tennessee. The company said that about 300 production and support positions would be "idled" as it winds down production during the first quarter. Sea Ray will also cut 275 additional jobs at its headquarters and other production facilities by Friday. Before the cuts, it employed about 1,500 in the Knoxville area.

"The three plants near Knoxville have recently completed a production furlough, which has helped reduce our overall marine pipeline, but the global marine market remains in a severe downturn because of the weakening economies here and abroad and anxious consumer sentiment," said Dustan McCoy, Brunswick chairman, in a statement. "These conditions have led to the difficult decision to mothball the Riverview facility."

Production from the facility will be transferred to plants in Knoxville and Vonore, Tennessee, as well as Brunswick's Palm Coast manufacturing facility in Florida, and a US Marine plant in Reynosa, Mexico.

The company said it would transfer as many Riverview employees as possible to other facilities. "By mothballing this facility, Brunswick retains the option of restoring production should market conditions reverse and improve," read the statement.

Brunswick has scheduled at least a week of production furloughs each month through the end of June to reduce production rates. Including Riverview, Brunswick has closed, mothballed or sold 15 boat facilities in North America since 2006.

(6 January 2009)

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