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Danish over-capacity forces Vestas plant closures

Vestas carries out further cost-cutting measures announced in October

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Vestas has laid off 2,200 workers in Denmark and will lay off a further 800 by this June.
Vestas has laid off 2,200 workers in Denmark and will lay off a further 800 by this June.

Vestas has given an update on its announcement in October to close five factories in Europe and the layoff of 3,000 workers.

The closures – primarily in Denmark  - is in response to over-capacity in Europe, Vestas said.  It said that it is introducing Shared Service Centres to reduce costs, improve services and eliminate redundancies.

“To date 2,200 layoffs have occurred, and Vestas plans to carry out the remaining scheduled 800 layoffs no later than June 2011. As stated earlier, the layoffs are primarily in Europe,” said Roald Steen Jakobsen, president Vestas People & Culture.

“The layoffs are taking place in stages to allow time for systems, processes and tools to be in place to ensure smooth business operation,” he explained.

The remaining layoffs will happen in stages, the company said. In January and February 300 of the 800 workers will be dismissed primarily in Europe and across business units. This number will include around 110 in Group IT in Denmark, in accordance with the Danish rules for mass dismissals.

From approximately March to the beginning of June, about 500 additional reductions will occur mainly within the functional areas of People & Culture, Finance, Logistics & Planning and Transport.

“With the completion of this effort, we can move forward confidently to meet our future goals,” Jakobsen said.
During the layoff period Vestas has created an internal job bank to find new jobs for as many of the affected employees as possible, he said.

Production at the affected factories has now stopped, and small service teams are cleaning the facilities. Vestas is currently investigating sales opportunities for the affected factories: Nacelles in Viborg, Skagen, and Lidköbing (S), Blades in Nakskov and Towers in Rudkøbing.

Today Vestas employs 6,650 in Denmark with administration, research or production in Randers, Aarhus, Hammel, Varde, Ringkøbing, Lem, Risø and Copenhagen. In November 2011 a new headquarters will also be ready for operation in Aarhus.

Globally Vestas employs 22,000+ employees and operates in 65 countries with more than 99% of revenue gained outside Denmark.

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