Wescast Confirms Ontario Foundry Closing

Optimization plan will lower operating costs, optimize facilities

Wescast Industries Inc., Brantford, ON, reports it will close its foundry in that city by the end of the year, confirming a possibility raised by the corporation almost two weeks earlier. The company’s directors have approved an optimization plan for North American operations that will lower operating costs and improve plant utilization. The Brantford plant will eliminate about C$25 million from the organization’s fixed costs for 2006.

The closing is expected within eight months. The Brantford plant employs about 340 hourly and salaried workers.

Wescast produces cast-iron exhaust manifolds for cars and light trucks.

"This has been a very difficult decision for Wescast and we deeply regret the effect it will have on our employees, their families and the Brantford community," said Ed Frackowiak, chairman and CEO. "After an extensive review of our Ontario manufacturing capabilities, and considering the impact of long-term structural changes in the global automotive marketplace, we have determined that this was the most effective course of action to better align our available capacity with the market and make our overall cost structure more competitive."

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