Goldhofer, the German manufacturer of heavy-duty and special vehicles, has decided to close its Airport Technology assembly facility in Ostfildern. Talks with the works council have started. The main reason for the decision is the coronavirus-induced economic crisis and the sharp downturn in sales in the aviation industry, including the market for aircraft and cargo and baggage tow tractors. The Goldhofer management is informing the 125 employees involved about the envisaged measures at a meeting to be held today.
The effects of the standstill in the field of aviation worldwide caused by the COVID 19 virus are also being felt in Ostfildern, where part of Goldhofer’s Airport Technology division is located. The division reports substantial losses of revenue due to a steep decline in incoming orders and postponements of existing orders following the global corona lockdown. As an appropriate response to this negative development, the Goldhofer Board has decided to close down the assembly lines in Ostfildern and at the same time create additional capacities at the main Memmingen facility for the series products previously manufactured in Ostfildern. “This consolidation of assembly activities will enable us to eliminate redundant structures, reduce process costs and benefit from synergies. It will also give us more flexibility to react to rapidly changing market requirements and create a sustainable basis for future growth in Memmingen,” says Lothar Holder, CEO at Goldhofer AG and Head of Airport Technology.
The overall concept includes a major reorganization of the Ostfildern factory and corporate structure, which in future will have a focus on development, sales and service. This means that certain operations will continue to be located in the region.
Talks with the works council will be held over the next few weeks on details of employee relocations and continued employment as well as redundancies for operational reasons and socially acceptable solutions.