Ford Australia to stop production after 110 years, 1200 jobs at stake
The development was officially revealed by Bob Graziano, CEO & President, Ford Australia. In a press conference yesterday, Bob stated that the company has reported losses to the tune of $600 million over the last five years, including $141 million in last fiscal. (figures in AUD).
Bob says, “Our costs are double that of Europe and nearly four times Ford in Asia,” said Graziano. “The business case simply did not stack up, leading us to the conclusion that manufacturing is not viable for Ford in Australia in the long-term. Our costs are double that of Europe and nearly four times Ford in Asia. The business case simply did not stack up, leading us to the conclusion that manufacturing is not viable for Ford in Australia in the long-term.”
“Australia has annual sales of approximately 1.1 million new vehicles, and customers have access to more than 65 brands and 365 models available for sale. This makes Australia one of the most competitive and crowded automotive markets in the world. Given the fragmented marketplace and the low model volumes that result, we decided that manufacturing locally is no longer viable. Ford vehicles have been part of the automotive landscape in Australia for almost 110 years and we have manufactured here since 1925. We are proud of that history. We are proud of our role in Australia and we haven’t made this decision lightly. Overall, we are changing, but our commitment to Australia remains strong. We’ll move through this transition and continue to be a vibrant and strong part of the Australian driving experience.”
Even as Ford Motor Company has announced that they will be ceasing local manufacture in Australia by October 2016, the company is concentrating heavily on launch of new products and enhancing sales and service operations in the region. The company will be paying greater attention to enhancement of business efficiency and ways of augmenting profitability in the future.
The company is going ahead with plans with regard to launch of updated version of Falcon, Falcon Ute and Territory which will be completed by 2014, while they will also be offering Ford Kuga, Ranger and Focus in Australian markets. By the year 2016, Ford will be expanding their product lineup and expect to achieve a 30% increase in new vehicles in the country and will also concentrate on offering support to their 1500 team members and 200 dealers across the country. But as a result of shutting down local manufacturing plants in Geelong and Broadmeadows, 1,200 people will lose their jobs.