Ford could cut 550 UK jobs as part of European restructuring

Ford is planning to cut thousands of jobs across Europe, with reports suggesting this could include up to 550 losses in the UK

Ford could cut up to 550 jobs in the UK as part of a massive restructuring of its European operations, it has been reported.

The American manufacturer confirmed in March that would be cutting around 5,000 jobs in Germany and an undisclosed number in the UK, but a source told City A.M. that between 500 and 550 “white collar, salaried employees” are expected lose their jobs at the brand’s offices in Essex.

The cost-cutting plan is intended to increase pre-profit earnings by up to $11m (£8.2m) over the next three to five years. As well as job losses, the company will be axing “less profitable vehicle lines”, and shifting away from MPVs to SUVs. Production of the C-MAX and Grand C-MAX in Germany is ceasing, and Ford’s gearbox factory in Bordeaux, France is to close. 

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In a statement, Ford said: “As part of a comprehensive European business transformation announced in January, we are reorganising our workforce in the European region.

“The goal is to significantly decrease structural costs, reduce bureaucracy, empower leaders and managers, and eliminate less value-added work. Within this context, in March we confirmed that we would offer voluntary separation programmes for employees in Germany and the UK to help accelerate the plan and return to sustainable profitability.

“Through these programs and other initiatives, we expect to reduce in excess of 5,000 jobs in Germany, including temporary staff. The total number of positions impacted in the UK is still to be determined.”

Ford also confirmed that any UK job losses as part of its European restructuring would be unrelated to its previously announced plan to cut up to 400 jobs at its Bridgend Engine Plant in South Wales.

Ford employs 13,000 people in the UK and around 54,000 in Europe. The company is targeting a six per cent profit margin in Europe, which would be higher than has previously been achieved in the region.

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