NSG Group reduces float capacity in Europe; says additional factory closings possible

Glass Magazine
May 14, 2012
COMMERCIAL, RETAIL, FABRICATION : BUSINESS

The NSG Group announced it will keep one of the two furnaces of its Gladbeck float plant in Germany out of operation until at least the end of calendar year 2012. The decision was taken as the result of reduced demand across Europe in the group's three main business sectors--solar energy, automotive and architectural products--according to a May 14 release.

Production at the Gladbeck float line was interrupted in mid-April for a planned cold repair. The refurbishment of the line is still underway, but given the highly competitive environment in Europe, NSG decided not to resume production until market demand recovers, officials said, in the release.

Local management is in discussion with the local works council concerning layoff agreements for different parts of the operation. Further possible reductions in the group's float glass capacity in Europe are currently under review.

In related news, the company said it slid into a net loss last fiscal year, and warned of deeper trouble ahead, soaking up restructuring costs to offset the impact of Europe's economic weakness on its core construction and auto glass operations, according to a May 10 Wall Street Journal report.

Speaking on the sidelines of a news conference, CFO Mark Lyons told Dow Jones Newswires that in the company's drive to return to the black, it will "review opportunities" to increase profitability. These could include possible "additional factory closures and with that comes job cuts," he said, according to the WSJ article.

Last month NSG Group President and CEO Craig Naylor resigned over disagreements with the board regarding company strategy.