Germany’s MAN SE, a truck manufacturer belonging to Volkswagen AG, the second largest automaker in the world and the biggest in Europe, might cut as many as 2,000 positions at the main trucks unit.
The Volkswagen-owned company is ready to revamp its operations as part of a large plan to reorganize production – according to sources from both within the company and from the unions. Executives and union leaders have been discussing for months the best strategy to reorganize the division’s truck production to gain the envisioned cost cuts of more than 600 million euros ($676 million) by 2017 as the manufacturer tries to become more efficient amid the parent’s strive to become the dominant worldwide force in the trucking sector. VW, Europe’s biggest vehicle builder, has already poured billions of euros over the past decade into its MAN and Scania truck units to gain access to the top of the line battle and surge past Daimler and Volvo. The combination also incurred massive costs that have not been recuperated yet and the parent company took MAN and Swedish brethren Scania into a new truck holding company.
Under the new strategy, truck manufacturing at MAN’s facility in Salzgitter in northern Germany would be abandoned, with around 2,500 employees in jeopardy to lose their jobs as the site is being transformed into a component plant, according to the people with knowledge of the matter. Production of heavy trucks would be relegated to the main facility in Munich, while light and medium-sized trucks would be built in Styria, Austria.