Crompton to Cut 1 Job in 10


Crompton Corp. says it plans to cut approximately 540 jobs as part of a plan to restructure operations. A spokeswoman said the company has not yet determined which businesses will be impacted, but management is expected to make those decisions this quarter.

The Middlebury, Conn., chemical company said July 22 that it was undertaking the plan to cut expenses and preserve margins in the face of surging raw materials costs. Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Robert L. Wood said Crompton has worked hard this year to pass on cost increases, but the companys own price hikes have not kept pace with rising expenses for natural gas, crude oil, benzene, tin and soybean oil.

In response, we are intensifying our pricing efforts and further reducing our administrative cost structure in order to restore historical margins, Wood said. Spokeswoman Debra Durbin said the company plans to shed 10 percent of its 5,400-person global workforce and added that the cuts would be spread throughout operations.

Management estimates the layoffs will save $50 million annually beginning in 2005, although they will also incur one-time charges of $50 million this year.

Durbin said Crompton began by offering buyouts to employees who volunteered to leave. One hundred forty people took the offer, and astructured process is under way to determine other reductions.

This is really an effort to streamline the company, Durbin said. With all the mergers and acquisitions weve had over the past few years, there is a lot of redundancy in the company.

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