July 2, 2007
Rapala VMC Corporation has today informed its labour representatives of its French distribution business units about plans to consolidate all French operations to Morvillars in the Eastern France. Today, the French distribution unit Ragot is located in Loudeac, Normandie, distribution unit Waterqueen and line supplier Tortue in Saint Marcel in Mid-France and hook manufacturing unit VMC and hook distribution unit VMC Europe in Morvillars.
With the consolidation of the operations to one location in France, the Group plans to gain major savings and efficiency improvements in deliveries and transportation, customer service and marketing, procurement and supplies, maintenance, organisational synergies and other location and logistic benefits. All in all, these changes would help to improve the competitiveness of the French operations in the tough competition in the fishing tackle market.
The plan is to move the operations from Loudeac and Saint Marcel to Morvillars and also move the operations of VMC Europe to the same premises. These plans would affect some 86 persons in France who are all offered work in the new location. The plan is that the relocation of Ragot would take place during the second half of 2007, Waterqueen and Tortue in mid-2008 and VMC Europe during the third quarter of 2008. The plan is also to invest in the line spooling and some other facilities to further improve the operations. The plan is also to sell the warehouse and office buildings in Loudeac and Saint Marcel and lease a new joint premise for these operations in Morvillars. The financial impact of the plan is yet unknown.
“This plan is a major change for our operations in France but we need to consider it to improve our competitiveness and to ensure that we can continue with major manufacturing and distribution operations in France in the future despite tough competition,” states Stanislas de Castelnau, Head of Fishing Hook Business & Distribution in France.