Job fears eased at factory

By Dave GooderhamHUNDREDS of workers have been reassured their jobs are safe just days after it was revealed their parent company was considering filing for bankruptcy.

By Dave Gooderham

HUNDREDS of workers have been reassured their jobs are safe just days after it was revealed their parent company was considering filing for bankruptcy.

Bosses at Delphi Automotive Systems in Sudbury have moved to ease “anxiety” among staff - in the wake of a $338million net loss from its American parent company - and said its site remained profitable.

The move in the USA led to fears any bankruptcy option could spell disaster within the Sudbury factory and cause huge repercussions in the local economy.


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But the Suffolk company, which employs about 800 staff, has now quelled concerns by confirming the European arm of Delphi remained profitable.

Although refusing to confirm all jobs on site were safe, Steve Coppock, human resources manager, said: “Within Delphi global corporation, Delphi Europe is a separate legal entity and is a successful, growing business.

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“Within Delphi Europe, I can confirm diesel operations, of which Sudbury is a part, are profitable.”

The job fears surfaced at the car part-makers following the announcement from Delphi's American base that it might have to file for bankruptcy to dump spiralling expensive pension and healthcare costs.

Steve Miller, chief executive and chairman, said: “We simply cannot compete and cannot survive in the long term unless we reduce our costs.”

In the wake of the fears, community leaders called for the Sudbury company to make a public statement over the future of hundreds of jobs.

Mr Coppock's reassurance was welcomed by union bosses, who said they were not envisaging any mass redundancies.

Paul Brewster, Amicus senior steward, said: “The unions are happy with the statement and we do not anticipate any job losses.

“With the car industry in the way it is, we can never be certain. We are in a very competitive industry, but I think the statement from Mr Coppock has allayed the anxiety of staff.”

dave.gooderham@eadt.co.uk

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