The Kingsport Foundry in Kingsport, TN, has begun the process of closing after 76 years. began shutting down Friday after 76 years of operation. The machining operation continues in operation, probably through the remainder of this month. About one-third of the 105 employees are already laid off; the rest will continue in the machining operations.
Bill Ring, Kingsport Foundry president, indicated the company cannot compete with low-cost imported cast metal products. "The Chinese can put castings on the dock in Charleston (SC) for less than we can buy material," Ring said.
Kingsport Foundry declared itself bankrupt in August 2002 and is still in the reorganization process. In September 2003 the foundry's creditors petitioned the court for the company to be liquidated. The court agreed to the request.
Ring said in local news reports that a buyer may emerge before the final closure, and he indicated he would present the offer to the federal court overseeing the bankruptcy process.