2:12 am
Wed November 19, 2008

Webasto May Leave Murray

Murray, KY – The economic slump in the automotive industry may cause Webasto to close its Murray plant, leaving 63 workers without jobs. Company officials say they're doing their best to prevent that from happening. Carrie Pond has more.

-------------------------------------------------------------- During these troubled times, people have significantly reduced their car purchases, leaving auto-parts manufacturers like Webasto with a significantly lower customer base. Vice President for Business Development Andreas Weller says the plant is considering three options to fight the downturn. Those include partnering with other companies to sell other automotive- or non-automotive products, or selling the building and its equipment to another operation. If those don't work, Weller says the company would be forced to consolidate the Murray plant with its home base in Michigan.

"Potentially be a plant and a team that's very suited for producing other parts or potentially working with other parties, but at the same time given the volatility of the industry at outlook for the economy, we'll have to continue to evaluate which one of those scenarios is going to be most likely." Weller says officials will be open with employees during the process, and the company plans to pursue one of the three options by next July. He says if the factory does close, layoffs or transfers would be discussed on an individual employee basis.