Thursday, March 05, 2009

Order Book Sagging, Gulfstream Cutting Heavy Metal -- and 1,200 Jobs

Conditions keep worsening in the stricken business jet industry. And job losses are mounting, in an industry is a major exporter.

Because of "deterioration in the backlog, particularly during the month of February, and continued weak demand," Gulfstream Aerospace said today it will cut large-cabin aircraft production and green-aircraft deliveries to 73 from a projected 94 this year. Gulfstream also will reduce production of its mid-size aircraft to 24 from a projected rate of 30 in 2009.

General Dynamics, which owns Gulfstream, said that this is "an effort to both stabilize its backlog of aircraft orders and level-load production over 2009 and 2010. This action will result in a reduction-in-force of 1,200 workers, including approximately 550 contractor personnel.

"Despite the current challenges, we continue to believe that Gulfstream's backlog provides a solid foundation for the business in this tough market environment," said Nicholas D. Chabraja, chairman and chief executive officer of General Dynamics. "We regret the impact of these actions on our employees and their families, and are doing our best to minimize the number of workers effected."


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