Alcoa Cuts Include Wheel, Vehicle Electric Units - aftermarketNews

Alcoa Cuts Include Wheel, Vehicle Electric Units

Alcoa will completely withdraw from the passenger car cast aluminum wheel business, instead focusing its efforts on forged aluminum wheels.

Included in the announcement that global metals firm Alcoa Inc. was making radical cuts to its workforce, it was announced the company planned to sell off both its passenger vehicle wheel business and its European transportation products unit.

The aluminum producer announced earlier this week that it was slashing 13 percent of its global workforce, cutting an estimated 13,500 jobs.

The employment cuts and others in production output will save the company some $450 million per year, Alcoa claimed. While its fourth quarter results won’t be announced until next week, Alcoa claimed a 52 percent drop in earnings for the third quarter as aluminum prices fell sharply and demand dropped.

As part of its restructuring plan, Alcoa said it would sell its cast auto wheels unit, European transportation products unit, and its global foil and electrical systems units.

The move means Alcoa will completely withdraw from the passenger car cast aluminum wheel business, instead focusing its efforts on forged aluminum wheels. This completes a trend begun some four years ago; of the four cast aluminum wheel factories operated by Alcoa, three have already been taken out of service. The remaining cast wheels unit includes a plant in Beloit, Wis., that employs about 265 people. The move, though, does not impact its truck wheel business.

"These are extraordinary times, requiring speed and decisiveness to address the current economic downturn," Klaus Kleinfeld, Alcoa’s president and CEO, said. "We will continue to monitor the dynamic market situation to ensure that we adjust capacity to meet any future changes in demand and seize new opportunities that emerge." (Courtesy of Tire Review)

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