LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) -- Boatmaker Brunswick Corp. said Thursday it plans to cut its work force by 1,000 and close a number of manufacturing plants in order to reduce costs by $300 million this year.
Brunswick has notified employees that it will reduce its hourly and salaried work force by 1,000, and said it may cut up to an additional 1,700 employees as further cost-cutting initiatives are completed.
The company plans to close four boat manufacturing plants. This is in addition to eight plant closures already completed or announced since 2007, which will bring the total number of plants to 17 by the end of 2009. Brunswick also plans to reduce the number of models and option packages it offers.
These actions will result in pretax restructuring charges of between $200 million and $220 million, including $75 million of previously announced restructuring charges related to actions taken earlier this year, the company said. About 85 percent of these charges will be recorded in 2008.
"An uncertain economy, high fuel and food prices, slumping home sales and values, rising unemployment and other factors continue to erode U.S. consumers' confidence and are reducing their ability and desire to purchase discretionary items such as boats, and billiards tables and fitness equipment for their homes," said Dustan E. McCoy, chairman and chief executive, in a statement.
"For our planning purposes, we are not assuming that these pressures will abate any time soon. As a result, we are planning for an environment in which the U.S. marine market will be smaller in the near term, and we will resize our company accordingly."