Textron eliminating 750 Cessna, Beechcraft jobs

WICHITA, Kansas – Cessna and Beechcraft announced on Wednesday that they are beginning layoffs.

The affected employees are being issued a 60-day Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN).

The layoffs will affect 750 full-time and contract employees and 575 of those are based in Kansas.

In a letter, Jim Walters, Textron Senior Vice President, said, “As a part of bringing together these businesses, we have identified redundancies in our global work force that have ultimately led to some very difficult decisions that affect the sizing of our business.”

The reduction affects all areas of the Beechcraft and Cessna businesses, including salaried and hourly employees in positions spanning from management to non-management levels.

“I knew it was going to happen. Immediately, my attitude was ok just because I got God on my side. It’s just another chapter in my life. He’s going to see me through it,” said Mike Alfaro, Cessna employee.

Last month, Textron purchased Beechcraft for $1.4 billion.

Textron expects about $4.6 billion in annual revenue from the combination of Cessna and Beechcraft.

Beechcraft filed for bankruptcy protection in 2012 because of the sluggish business jet market during the economic downturn. It sold its Hawker business jet assets and emerged from bankruptcy protection in 2013. Cessna laid off workers in 2013, although it didn’t say how many jobs were eliminated. It also offered voluntary retirement for hourly and salaried workers, and said it would cut production that year because of weak demand for light jet products.

In December, Textron said it hadn’t made a decision about layoffs following the acquisition, but it acknowledged restructuring and other moves were possible. The company said the combination of Beechcraft and Cessna would be good news for Wichita because Beechcraft would have a stronger parent company.

Shares of Textron rose 17 cents to $40.23 in midday trading.

Textron Employee WARN Letter April 2014
Local leaders react to Textron eliminating 750 jobs
Wichita reeling with layoffs

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