ZWIJNDRECHT, the Netherlands – Heerema Fabrication Group (HFG) has announced that it will lay-off the majority of its staff, and that it needs to adapt to its “strongly decreasing volume of work.”
Several factors were given as reasons behind the decision, with the company citing poor market conditions; increasing competition; the combination of price pressure and unfavorable contractual conditions in the wind energy market, and the “somber prospects for the near future.”
“As a result of the restructuring, an anticipated 450 of the existing 770 jobs in the company will be phased out,” HFG said in a statement. “Compulsory redundancies will unfortunately be unavoidable. The job losses will affect the head office in Zwijndrecht (Netherlands), next to the HFG yards in the Netherlands, the UK, and Poland.”
The intended reorganization will focus on rebalancing after its work orders have slowed, as well increasing its efficiency and competitiveness, with the aim of better preparing the company for the future.
Management is said to have informed employees of the situation and has requested advice from the works council of HFG Netherlands. The company said it had also entered into discussions with the trade unions about a severance scheme.
CEO Koos-Jan van Brouwershaven said: “We fully realize just how devastating the planned reorganization will be for many of our colleagues who have made such an important contribution to our company. We will do our utmost to support them throughout this difficult period. At the same time we are convinced that these steps are absolutely essential for the stability of HFG and to guarantee its continuity.”
The plans will enable HFG to continue operations at all its locations in Vlissingen, Zwijndrecht, Hartlepool, UK, and Opole, Poland. The reorganization will not affect the Heerema Innovation Center.
“The expectation is that, due to growing energy requirements in the long term, the number of projects in the market will increase again in the future. Until that time we will do everything in our power to maintain as much employment as possible,” said van Brouwershaven.