Cat Closes 5 More Plants

April 29, 2016

Caterpillar announced Thursday it will close five more factories  as the Illinois-based heavy equipment maker reacts to slowing demand for construction and mining equipment worldwide by cutting capacity.

The cuts are part of CAT's strategy outlined last September to reduce its workforce by 10,000 positions and close or consolidate 20 facilities through 2018.

Facilities closing are:

Oxford, Mississippi - 240 employees, manufactures high-pressure hose couplings and will continue production into 2017.  Consolidation with Caterpillar’s plant in Menominee, Michigan, will take place in 12-18 months. Some work will go to outside suppliers. Cat hopes to sell the building.

Newberry, South Carolina - a 325-employee electric generator packaging facility in Newberry, South Carolina

 Ridgeway, South Carolina - a 75-employee generator assembly panel plant in Ridgeway, South Carolina, will shift work to company plants in Seguin, Texas; Lafayette, Indiana; and Griffin, Georgia.

Jacksonville, Florida - a 70-worker bucket and other medium wheel loader line work tool attachments plant will shift work to outside suppliers.

Morganton, North Carolina - a 110-worker engine and undercarriage component plant in will shift work to other company plants and suppliers.

Cat will also demolish the mostly vacant engine manufacturing building BB in Mossville, Illinois.

Caterpillar says it has laid off 5,300 workers between last September through March 30. With Thursday’s announcement, Caterpillar is closing or consolidating 20 facilities.

Company spokeswoman Rachel Potts wrote in an email that severance packages are being offered, as well as some employee transfers. None of the closing factories are unionized.