"In 2009 we renegotiated many customer and supplier contracts that were set to expire at the end of 2009. It was critical that the terms of all new contracts meet our financial and strategic goals. We were successful on many fronts, but not all. As a result, we have experienced a volume loss that impacts our North American operations," he said.
Customers served by the Clarion plant will be served by other O-I plants in the future. "While we regret the impact this has on our Clarion employees, it is imperative that we take such actions to ensure the long-term health of the company," Escobar said. The plant employs about 420 people. It employed 537 in early 1994. Since 1995, it has employed about 400 people.
O-I´s operations in the Tri-County Area will include two glass factories and a machine shop in the Brockway area. In May, those operations employed 550 workers.
When Owens-Illinois merged with Brockway Inc., formerly Brockway Glass, in the last 1980s, operations also included a mould shop (which was sold but is still in operation) and a plastics closure division in Brookville, which is no longer part of O-I´s operations.
In 1994, total employment by O-I, including the Clarion plant, was nearly 2,100 workers. The company will offer support services for all of the employees. Company and union representatives will meet soon to discuss details.