DC Ross closure to make 8 workers redundant

DC Ross has announced to staff it will close permanently in April next year.

A proposal was put to DC Ross staff in late September by its owning company, Scott Technology, suggesting the precision engineering business go through a two-step closure in February and April.

Staff have been able to give feedback on the proposal in the time since.

The decision means the eight employees will be made redundant in the first half of next year.

Scott Technology’s chief operating officer, Richard Jenman, said he spent yesterday confirming the business would close.

‘‘Yes we have announced today that after the consultation period we received some feedback that’s caused a minor change to our initial proposal, but we are proceeding ... to close DC Ross no earlier than April next year.’’

Mr Jenman said market conditions and competition with bigger companies around the world had led to the proposal to close DC Ross — and the workers knew it.

‘‘Unfortunately, they [staff] felt resigned to the fact that the opportunity for DC Ross to compete in the automotive market was as dire today as it was when Scott acquired the group,’’ he said.

It was likely a few members of staff would leave in February, but the majority would go in April.

‘‘The first step is pretty minor,’’ Mr Jenman said.

‘‘We think that with some people already finding an opportunity that first step may be a minor step.

‘‘Primarily the main step will be ... definitely will not be earlier than April. Depending on last orders from customers it may be a later stage in April.’’

Mr Jenman said he was hopeful those being made redundant would be employed by other engineering companies in the area.

‘‘Our concern there is that they do find work, hopefully, within the [Scott] group or wherever they feel it’s best for them.

‘‘We think that some, at least one, may have another job already.’’

When the proposal was made, one worker said staff were disappointed and surprised by the announcement, having believed the company was doing well.

Mr Jenman said there would be a few slight changes to the proposal concerning the ‘‘timings of jobs’’ that would remain towards the end of April.

Some staff were hopeful another company might swoop in to save DC Ross, he said.

‘‘They’re hopeful that perhaps there are interested parties that may see benefit in bulking on DC Ross to existing operations as an ongoing concern.

‘‘We would certainly encourage interested parties to get in touch.

‘‘We would very much like to enable the business to continue.’’

He said he had no doubts about the financial health of the Scott Technology group.

‘‘None whatsoever, in fact I’m only expecting good news for the group.’’

jacob.mcsweeny@odt.co.nz

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