ThyssenKrupp has announced it will delay the planned start of stainless
steel production at its $4 billion plant in Alabama. Speaking at the
company's annual general meeting on 1/23, company CEO Ekkehard Schulz
did not estimate how long the delay would be, but said the drop in
demand was the worst he had seen in his 40-year career. "We will set
and evaluate priorities, whether it makes more sense to move some
investments to a later date," Schulz said. He said production at the
plant near Mobile, Alabama, would definitely start later than the
originally planned early 2010 target.
According to Schulz, ThyssenKrupp was considering overtime cutbacks and
shorter working hours among other measures to help it adjust production
to flagging demand. Yet, despite those measures, Schulz said the
unprecedented economic instability meant he could not rule out
"significant cuts" in personnel. He noted the company expected its
high-grade steel division to post a loss at the outset of the fiscal
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