UK: Goliath Footwear Axes More Jobs
Goliath Footwear, which is part of the Co-operative Wholesale Society, is to cut its workforce at Heckmondwike, near Leeds in West Yorkshire by 40. These latest job losses come just seven months after the company made 49 people at the factory redundant, and it will mean that the workforce at Heckmondwike has been halved this year.
Goliath currently employs 120 people. The 40 redundancies will take place over the next three months, and management at the factory is talking to the two trade unions concerned, KFAT and MSF. Just a few years ago the factory, which specialises in the production of safety footwear, employed 300 people, but the company says it has been hit by intensifying competition from imported footwear.
"We very much regret having to make this move, but the highly competitive situation in the safety footwear market leaves us with no choice," said a spokesman for the company.
"Some 75 per cent of UK safety footwear is now sourced from overseas and the strength of the pound has exacerbated this situation. In order to compete more effectively in the changed marketplace and meet the needs of our customers, we have had to follow other UK safety footwear suppliers by introducing imported goods into our own range.
"As a result, the production capacity at the Heckmondwike factory is being reduced to ensure that the factory remains profitable."
By Clive Hinchliffe
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