Hidden on a state website, news emerged this week that Ansell Occupational Healthcare, maker of industrial gloves and protective gear, will be terminating manufacturing at its Coschocton plant later in 2011, eliminating 55 jobs. In addition to ceasing production, the company made no promises about other jobs at the site, stating only that “certain non-manufacturing functions will likely continue at the Coschocton Plant” which boasts a workforce of 350, “for a period of time.” The facility has been operating in Coschocton since 1934.
No reason was given in the filing for the move other than that the company had “reviewed its operations and made the decision to close the manufacturing operation,” but the company has a track record of shipping U.S. jobs and equipment overseas. In 2001, the company announced a wave of job cuts, including 235 at its 50-year -old manufacturing facility in Massilon, moving production to Mexico and sending equipment to a factory in Asia. At the time, the company was called out in Rubber & Plastics News for the audacity of having its employees, whose livelihoods depended on the plant, dismantle the equipment and prepare it for shipment to Asia. Later that same year, the company moved its global R&D from Coshocton and Massilon to Malaysia.
As recently as 2009, the company informed shareholders that its strategy is to continue to “rationalize its manufacturing sites” to “move production to lower cost sites”.
No word yet on whether Governor Kasich’s Jobs Czar and outsourcing champion Mark Kvamme attempted to work with the company to convince it to stay.