Munich, Germany – Wacker Chemie AG is slashing more than 1,000 jobs by the end of 2022 as part of an efficiency programme to save €250 million each year.
Unveiled 20 Feb, Wacker’s “Shape the Future” programme will also include efforts to reduce material costs and in-house services to create a leaner company structure.
"We are preparing for a harsher competitive environment—both in our polysilicon business and at our chemical divisions," CEO Rudolf Staudigl said in a statement.
With the reorganisation initiative, Staudigl said Wacker aimed to achieve “significant cost savings” and “secure a long-term competitive edge."
The restructuring comes less than a month after the German chemicals supplier reported a loss of €630 million in its preliminary figures for 2019.
Revenue fell 1% year-on-year to €4.9 billion, due in part to lower prices for solar-grade polysilicon and standard silicones.
The pending job cuts will affect administrative departments and the indirect, non-operational functions of Wacker's business divisions.
More than 80% of the reductions will be made at German facilities, which employ about 10,000 of Wacker's 14,500 employees.
Wacker officials said they will work with employee representatives to reduce the work force in a socially responsible manner: through retirement, semi-retirement, and severance agreements.
If the measures are successful, the company can avoid compulsory layoffs.
The first outline of the restructuring plan has been presented to employees and is up for discussion and evaluation, according to Christian Hartel, an executive board member.
"We will continue to work closely on this with employee representatives and enter into constructive negotiations promptly," Hartel said. "We are confident of finding good and fair solutions to achieve our objectives."