Citing the coronavirus pandemic, a manufacturing facility that once employed upwards of 300 people in Greenwood, South Carolina is shutting down its Palmetto State plant and transferring its operations to facilities in Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin.
It is not immediately clear how many employees will be impacted by the announcement.
Mayville Engineering Company – a manufacturing firm which is based in Mayville, Wisconsin – reportedly broke the news to its South Carolina employees on Wednesday.
This news outlet learned of the announcement via a memorandum sent by a company vice president to a supplier.
“During the last several months, Mayville Engineering Company has experienced a downturn in the end markets our Greenwood plant serves,” the memo noted. “This, coupled with the COVID-19 pandemic, has resulted in Mayville Engineering Company taking numerous actions to restructure the business in order to remain competitive and continue to best service our diverse customer base.”
One of those decisions? Closing the Greenwood plant located at 161 Rock Church Road and initiating the “consolidation of its business” into facilities in Byron Center, Michigan, Defiance, Ohio, Neillsville, Wisconsin and Mayville, Wisconsin.
This “consolidation” will be completed by August 15, 2020.
Take a look …
(Click to view)
This letter was dated one day after Mayville posted its earnings report for the first quarter of 2020. According to the company, its net sales declined 24 percent during the first quarter – from $143.7 million during the first quarter of 2019 to $108.6 million during the first three months of this year.
This decline was “attributed to the continued impact of market demand changes and related destocking activities that adversely impacted the latter part of 2019 and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” according to a news release accompanying the earnings report.
“Despite ongoing challenges in some of the end markets we serve, our first quarter results reflect sequentially improved operating performance and the benefits of the cost saving measures implemented over the past six months,” company chairman, president and chief executive officer Robert D. Kamphuis said in that release. “Of course, the COVID-19 pandemic has added a level of uncertainty and complexity across the industry. MEC and many of our customers maintain the essential services designation, and as always, we stand ready to assist our customers in any way we can. Today, all of our facilities remain operational, albeit at lower production levels.”
Mayville’s announcement could have an impact on other suppliers in the region, sources familiar with the situation told this news outlet. And sadly, the situation the company is confronted by is far from unique.
“Manufacturing is so good for this state,” one of our sources noted. “Hate to see any of it leave.”
We agree …
But these jobs are gone. And unlikely to come back anytime soon, sadly.
As this news outlet has chronicled, hundreds of thousands of South Carolinians have filed for unemployment in the aftermath of all the coronavirus-related shutdowns. Also, it is worth remembering the Palmetto State already had one of the smallest workforces in the nation (as a percentage of its working age population) prior to the virus hitting.
Which compounds the pain of announcements like this one …
Such job loss announcements also underscore the need for policymakers in Columbia, S.C. to make much better choices when it comes to the resources taxpayers have placed at their disposal. Sadly, though, the debate over coronavirus stimulus funds would seem to indicate better choices are not in the offing.
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