GE Announces Two Factory Closures Within a Week
General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) has left many in shock after it announced a second factory closure within a week.
The multinational manufacturing conglomerate has confirmed that the company is closing its bulb manufacturing plant in Mattoon, Illinois.
The factory, which employs about 133 employees, will permanently close this week. Just 36 of these employees will remain at the plant for a few more months while the plant is cleaned and prepared for any future use that the company may deem possible.
The factory had been active for the past 71 years and had employed over two generations of locals. The news of the factory closure has left residents of the small town both sad and furious, many of whom took to social media to share their feelings.
Another employee shared the real reason behind the plant closure.
The employee’s reasoning tallies with the one given by the company spokesperson, Alicia Gauer.
According to Gauer, the Mattoon lamp plant, which produced halogen and incandescent bulbs and similar older lighting products, has been operating 60% under capacity as demand for these products declined. The production volume at the factory had significantly dropped while demand for LED lighting took off.
This is the second plant closure that GE has announced this week. Earlier in the week, the company also shared plans to shut down its plant in Rochester, New York, and move the manufacturing jobs to China. Nearly 90 employees at the Rochester plant will lose their jobs.
General Electric’s exit from Mattoon is nonetheless a grave loss to the local community and to the state as it loses a significant corporate tax payer. Locals are rightfully concerned as Illinois continues to see an exodus of employers.
Through the last month alone, 17 companies informed the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity of significant upcoming layoffs within the state. Thousands of Americans in Illinois are going to lose their jobs in the coming months.
“GE closing Mattoon plant on Friday,” The State Journal-Register, August 10, 2017.