SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – One of the world’s largest glass tableware manufacturers on Wednesday announced a “tentative” plan to close its facility in Shreveport just one month after filing for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy.
The proposed closing of Libbey Glass Factory at 4302 Jewella Ave. is apart of the reorganization plan to reduce costs and align manufacturing capacity with lower levels of projected demand.
Libbey says they will negotiate the plan with the unions representing its employees prior to finalizing a decision.
In a statement Wednesday, Mike Bauer, chief executive officer of Libbey, said, “Over the last few years, we have experienced declining demand in our core markets, which has contributed to overcapacity.
“This has been exacerbated by COVID-19,” Bauer said. “The recommendation to close our facility in Shreveport will better align our cost structure with current and expected customer demand as we position Libbey for the future.
“If the closure occurs,” he continued, “we will leverage our existing U.S. and international manufacturing footprint, along with our best-in-class sourcing capabilities, to continue to provide industry-leading service to our customers and end-users.”
Bauer said although the decision was difficult, the company believes the closure is a “necessary step in transforming Libbey for success in the post-COVID-19 era.”
He said the company recognizes the impact shuttering the company could have on its 450 employees in Shreveport, along with their families and the community, but said the company will work with the unions that represent Libbey employees. He added that the company plans to keep its stakeholders informed as it considers final decisions about continued operations.
This tentative plan, if implemented, would wind down Libbey’s manufacturing operations in Shreveport by the end of 2020. The Company’s distribution center in Greenwood, Louisiana will not be affected by the closure of the Jewella plant and will remain open, the statement said.