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Hitachi Will Close Mexico Plant and Cut 4,500 Jobs
Mar 26, 2007
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Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (San Jose, California, U.S.) plans a series of manufacturing and development consolidations designed to streamline operations and maximize efficiencies. Hardest hit will be a slider manufacturing facility in Guadalajara, Mexico, which will be shuttered by mid-2008 and leave 4,500 plant workers jobless.

Through the planned consolidations, Hitachi will create “centers of competency” for the development and production of three hard disk drives (HDD) components: sliders, head-gimbal assemblies (HGA) and media. Hitachi expects the streamlining to result in potential savings of nearly U.S. $300 million in the next 5 years

“This strategic manufacturing plan will not only improve Hitachi’s competitiveness, but will also benefit our customers by gaining greater supply flexibility, more advanced technologies and faster time to market,” said Hiroaki Nakanishi, chief executive officer, Hitachi Global Storage Technologies.

Manufacturing consolidation plans include:
  • Laguna, Philippines: Slider manufacturing will be increased to make this the company's center of competency for this component.
  • Guadalajara, Mexico: Slider manufacturing facility will be shuttered by the middle of 2008.
  • Shenzhen, China: Media manufacturing will be increased to make this facility the media center of competency. Shenzhen operations will also become the center of competency for HGA manufacturing
  • Odawara, Japan: Media manufacturing will be closed in the fourth quarter of 2007.
  • Prachinburi, Thailand: The facility will have a new mission to manufacturing 2.5-inch automotive hard disk drives and increase existing HGA production.
  • San Jose, California: The facility will retain media manufacturing, complementing media production in Shenzhen.
Development consolidation includes:
  • Odawara, Japan: The facility becomes the center of competency for slider development.
  • San Jose, California: The facility becomes center of competency for media development.
Hitachi said locating centers of competency near its final HDD-assembly plants in Thailand and China will streamline operations and advance its mega-manufacturing concept. This concept is based on the premise that greater efficiencies will result from placing the entire manufacturing supply chain in a central hub.

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