Mon, Sep 27, 2010
Boisture: "Market Is Not Improving As We Had Hoped"
Hawker Beechcraft CEO Bill Boisture announced late last week
that the company plans to lay off 350 salaried employees, citing
continued sluggishness in the economy. "(T)he market for new
production aircraft is not improving as we had hoped," Boisture
said in a letter to employees, which nearly echoed remarks from
Cessna CEO Jack Pelton announcing layoffs at that company earlier
in the week..
The letter says large-scale layoffs of hourly workers are not
expected at this time, but that furloughs may be necessary or there
may be a few hourly jobs lost. HBC is currently in contract
negotiations with its machinists.
But television station KWCH reports that there are also rumors
around town that HBC may pull up stakes from Wichita entirely and
move its operations to Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The International
Association of Machinists (IAM) says it believes HBC will be
staying in Wichita, and the company would only say that no decision
has been made.
Hawker Beechcraft CEO Bill Boisture
The move by HBC brings the number of aviation-related layoffs in
Wichita to over a thousand in just the past week. Cessna said on
Tuesday that it plans to lay off 700 workers, citing the same
economic conditions and industry sluggishness as HBC. And the
effects of the job losses go beyond the individuals who are looking
for work. The station said, for example, that even those who keep
their jobs are concerned about the future, and don't borrow money
or spend it.
The layoff notices at HBC are expected to go out by November
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