NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Dec. 19, 2008) — Bridgestone Bandag Tire Solutions will shut its Oncor mold-cure retread plant in St. Louis and lay off 60 employees in several offices in response to the reduced demand for truck tires and retreads.
Bridgestone Bandag plans to cease production at the Oncor plant Jan. 31, resulting in 21 layoffs. The decision reflects the unit's desire to align its retreading assets under the Bandag precure umbrella.
Other jobs being eliminated include nine at Bridgestone Bandag headquarters in Muscatine, Iowa, and seven at the Bridgestone Firestone North American Tire L.L.C. headquarters in Nashville, along with 23 field sales positions.
The changes will take place immediately and involve the consolidation of functions and job responsibilities in the firm's sales, marketing, finance, legal and human resources departments, the company said.
Muscatine will remain Bridgestone Bandag's headquarters, and the finance and marketing teams for the division are being asked to relocate there from Nashville, the company said. Affected full-time employees at both Bridgestone Bandag and Oncor will receive outplacement services and severance pay.
“These have been very difficult decisions to make, but our leadership team has been working diligently on the future direction of the organization,” said Bridgestone Bandag President Saul Solomon. “Although we've taken a number of steps to reduce expenses while enhancing quality… it was clear we needed to do more. Today's announcements reflect our commitment to make good business decisions that will benefit our customers and our business for the long term.”
The decisions are part of Bridgestone Bandag's efforts to integrate and streamline its business to offer its customers one truck and retread tire business unit responsible for providing programs, services, information and products that reduce fleet operating costs and give dealers the opportunity to enhance their business, the firm said.
“We are 18 months into our integration journey, and we are making great progress in creating one cohesive business unit that has, at its core, a focus on the customer,” Solomon said.
Bridgestone Bandag makes, markets and sells medium and heavy-duty truck tires under the Bridgestone, Firestone and Dayton brands for the U.S. and Canadian OE and replacement markets, and oversees the franchised Bandag retreading process as well as commercial retail operations doing business as TDS.