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250 jobs to go as ABB slims down from 17 to seven UK sites

01 December, 2000

250 jobs to go as ABB slims down from 17 to seven UK sites

ABB Automation is planning to close ten of its UK sites over the next 18 months, cutting the number of sites it operates from 17 to seven. The changes will mean the loss of up to 250 jobs among the company`s 1,600 UK employees.

The changes follow ABB`s announcement last July that it was merging its UK automation and instrumentation activities to form a single industrial IT organisation spanning a range of product areas from motors, drives and robots, to process control, instrumentation and turbochargers.

ABB says that the consolidation of the sites is part of the process of simplifying its sales operation and enhancing its manufacturing, service and support activities.

The company stresses that there will be no reduction in the overall scale of the ABB Automation operation, nor in the range of products and services that it offers.

"Having 17 locations makes no sense when we are trying to benefit from synergies and provide a one-stop shop for customers` industrial IT needs," explains David Denton, managing director of ABB Automation. "Six of the chosen sites are existing facilities strategically located throughout the UK. We will be expanding them and enhancing facilities."

As part of the changes, ABB`s existing drives and motors site in Didsbury will close, but will transfer to new premises nearby. The six sites that are being kept are at Aberdeen, Milton Keynes, St Neots, Stonehouse, Telford and Workington.

ABB says that some job losses are necessary because of overlaps in some areas resulting from rationalisation of manufacturing, service and support functions. "While the company regrets this, it is the only way forward in these competitive times," ABB adds.

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