Whirlpool Corporation said today it will restructure manufacturing in North America, including expanding manufacturing in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico, and layoffs in Fort Smith, Arkansas, U.S., and in Evansville, Indiana, U.S.
Whirlpool (Benton Harbor, Michigan, U.S.) said it is planning to expand production of side-by-side refrigeration products at its Ramos Arizpe, Mexico, refrigeration manufacturing facility, beginning in 2007.
Approximately 700 employees at the Whirlpool facility in Fort Smith, Arkansas, are expected to be laid off. Whirlpool expects these layoffs to come in the first half of 2008, as models currently made in Fort Smith move to the Ramos Arizpe plant. Whirlpool recently completed the voluntary layoff of about 940 employees in Fort Smith by transferring production of some models to the Ramos Arizpe facility.
Whirlpool also plans to adjust production levels at its Evansville, Indiana, top freezer refrigeration products plant in 2007. Projections for lower consumer demand for top freezer products will result in layoffs of about 500 employees in Evansville.
Whirlpool previously announced workforce expansion at its Clyde, Ohio and Marion, Ohio laundry appliance plants. The two facilities will each get about half of more than 1,100 new jobs. Whirlpool said the installation of machinery in the Ohio plants is nearly complete and the expanded production should start in Ohio by the end of the year.
Also previously announced was expansion of manufacturing capacity for bottom freezer refrigeration products in Amana, Iowa. This expansion will create up to 400 new jobs in Amana.
"Whirlpool's leadership position in the appliance industry is built on our ability to offer consumers a portfolio of leading brand names supported by innovative products and services," said David L. Swift, president, Whirlpool North America. "These initiatives strengthen Whirlpool's industry leading position while also improving productivity and efficiency across our North American manufacturing platform.
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