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Procter & Gamble moving 160 jobs from Augusta

Friday, Nov. 9, 2012 12:31 PM
Last updated Saturday, Nov. 10, 2012 2:53 AM
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Procter & Gamble, one of Augusta’s oldest industries, is moving its powdered-detergent operations to a facility in Louisiana and will eliminate 160 local jobs over the next 12 to 18 months.

This 2009 photo shows plant manufacturing more detergent, such as bagged versions of Gain and Ariel targeted to Hispanic buyers.  FILE/STAFF
FILE/STAFF
This 2009 photo shows plant manufacturing more detergent, such as bagged versions of Gain and Ariel targeted to Hispanic buyers.

Employees at the Mike Padgett Highway plant have been briefed on the transition, and many will be offered jobs at other Procter & Gamble sites around the nation, plant manager Marian Futrell said at a news conference Friday.

The Augusta plant will remain in operation as a manufacturer of dryer bars, a process that will require about 40 employees. Employees who wish to stay in Augusta will be able to apply for those positions, according to Kristen Soler, the site’s human resources leader.

The phasing-out of the detergent-powder operations in Augusta is part of a move to center that process at a plant in Alexandria, La., which will add about 50 jobs. That plant already makes liquid detergent, along with a facility in Lima, Ohio.

“I am pleased to share that we are able to offer transfer opportunities for every one of our employees to another P&G facility in North America,” Futrell said.

Displaced employees who wish to accept positions in Louisiana or other P&G sites will be offered transfer and moving assistance, company officials said.

The company has identified enough jobs in other areas to accommodate all local workers who wish to move and might have opportunities for spouses, too, Futrell said. Those who do not want to leave Augusta will be offered severance and retirement packages.

Soler said the plant employs about 100 contractors who provide a variety of services. She said at this point none of those jobs are going to be affected by the reorganization.

Futrell said P&G is looking at the possibility of bringing new products and more manufacturing to the plant in the future, but she declined to provide details Friday.

Augusta’s P&G detergent operations began in 1962 in negotiations with city leaders working to recruit new industry. Soon after, the company bought 240 acres to build the first synthetic-detergent manufacturing plant in the Southeast.

The plant went into production in February 1963, becoming one of the first residents of the “Miracle Mile” industrial district along Mike Padg­ett and Marvin Griffin Road.

As recently as 2009, the company was still adding jobs to the facility and employed 240 workers and 360 contract workers.

That year, 150 jobs and two production lines were added to the plant, which at the time was the only place making
the new Bounce Dryer Bar.

For much of its tenure, the plant has focused on making powder versions of Tide, Cheer, Draft, Ivory Snow and Gain laundry detergents.

Walter Sprouse, the executive director of the Augusta Eco­nomic Development Au­thor­­ity, said P&G’s decision was driven by declining market demand.

“There’s obviously no secret that the market share of powder detergent has gone down steadily for a number of years,” he said.

Those market signs pointed toward an eventual consolidation of operations for years, Sprouse said. The development authority tried to bring the consolidation of operations to Augusta, but the Loui­siana plant has newer equipment and facilities, he said.

Procter & Gamble brought new product lines to the Augusta plant several years ago in an effort to compensate for the declining market share of powder detergent, Sprouse said.

“It’s important to note they are not closing the facility,” he said.

The economic impact of the job losses depends on factors such as the number of employees who retire, find other local jobs or transfer out of the city, Sprouse said. Some might find new work when Starbucks Cof­fee Co. and Rockwood Color and Pig­ment Services begin hiring for their new plants, he said.

Staff Writer Meg Mirshak contributed to this article.

Comments (44) Add comment
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mosovich
832
Points
mosovich 11/09/12 - 12:36 pm
4
7
Dumb article..

Why put this out there?? You know nothing, but you make an announcement that something is coming.. Why not wait till you know the details.. Just think of the families back at home that may not have known something was coming only to find out in the paper.. Poor reporting!

Fiat_Lux
16200
Points
Fiat_Lux 11/09/12 - 12:40 pm
8
2
Most reporting these days

falls under the category of sanctioned gossip. Newspapers and broadcast/telecast outlets fall all over themselves to spread it first, fastest and farthest.

Dixieman
16479
Points
Dixieman 11/09/12 - 12:41 pm
12
2
Probably

closing it down in honor of Obama's second term.

caddie160
52
Points
caddie160 11/09/12 - 12:58 pm
1
7
there is talk of expanding

there is talk of expanding their opertation here

walrus4ever
354
Points
walrus4ever 11/09/12 - 01:07 pm
7
0
quite the contrary

quite the contrary

dichotomy
36047
Points
dichotomy 11/09/12 - 01:25 pm
9
0
You usually don't notify

You usually don't notify employees of future changes when you are expanding.

You usually notify employees of coming cuts or transfers before you make the public announcement.

Sure hope I'm wrong.

Austin Rhodes
2970
Points
Austin Rhodes 11/09/12 - 01:30 pm
9
3
The employees got word this morning...

...and they started calling and writing media immediately...what should we do...ignore them?

Our station reported at noon that employees were being notified of a huge mission change at the plant that was going to leave them with about 40 people on site, with a much different purpose than they have now.

Folks are being offered relocation pkgs and/or severance deals if they choose not to leave Augusta. The plan is a 12 - 18 month phase out.

Fiat Lux...you weren't even close.

caddie160
52
Points
caddie160 11/09/12 - 02:01 pm
1
6
they are thinking about

they are thinking about bringing production of a couple of products here

dichotomy
36047
Points
dichotomy 11/09/12 - 02:14 pm
14
2
Won't be the last.

Hang on to your butts. Facing 4 more years of Obama, the cost of Obamacare, tax increases, more regulation, etc. there will be lots more cutbacks, consolidations, closings, layoffs, and full-time jobs being made 30 hours per week jobs. This won't be the last downsizing/closing and there might be some "delays" in countyman's new stuff that is supposed to come here. The economic environment for expansion just turned very sour. South Augusta, you will get the short end of the development stick as usual and will probably even lose ground. We've had our tiny lick and a promise from our local politicians but most of it will probably be caving in on us with Obama's re-election.

The Proctor and Gamble folks just got kicked in the gut and my thoughts are with them. I hope the best for them. I hope all of them are able to take a transfer to a better place or are able to retire. If you get severance, take it and RUN to Texas or another right-to-work state. Lots of businesses will be leaving California and relocating to Texas. A lot of their citizens are relocating to Nevada but most of their businesses are moving to Texas.

But hey, everybody gets free birth control pills and Medicaid. What else could a liberal ask for?

ridesbrd
112
Points
ridesbrd 11/09/12 - 02:29 pm
1
11
They are moving production

to another part of AMERICA, shock awe its all Obama's fault. LOL Cons melting everywhere. They even say in the article that they have more jobs than the ones they are cutting here and could employ spouses too if they want to relocate.

Sounds to me like Obama created jobs in this situation.....

AutumnLeaves
9474
Points
AutumnLeaves 11/09/12 - 02:36 pm
3
0
Boeing....

Boeing just laid off 12,000.

allhans
24452
Points
allhans 11/09/12 - 02:46 pm
8
1
Wall Street can't take much

Wall Street can't take much more of the shock and awe proliferate spending of the Obama himself. Look out for falling..... stocks.

It could be worse, the poor folks up the coast a ways can't even flush their toilets. While Washington fiddles....

ridesbrd
112
Points
ridesbrd 11/09/12 - 02:56 pm
1
10
yes boeing did lay off a ton of people

but the airline/aerospace industry has been in trouble since the Bush Administration so no big surprise there.

saywhatagain
413
Points
saywhatagain 11/09/12 - 02:57 pm
10
1
I wonder

I wonder how many of those 160 voted for Obama?

wayne2410
1239
Points
wayne2410 11/09/12 - 02:59 pm
0
0
Well this is Obama and the
Unpublished

Well this is Obama and the libs world, this will become routine. It is what they wanted, it is what we all are going to get. That is the part that bothers me, if they want to live in a decaying and dying world, fine, I just wish they would not drag the rest of us down with them.

Patty-P
3516
Points
Patty-P 11/09/12 - 03:14 pm
9
2
I wonder how Countyman will

I wonder how Countyman will spin this.

dichotomy
36047
Points
dichotomy 11/09/12 - 03:30 pm
8
1
Boeing.

Boeing weathered Bush, the crash, and even 4 years of Obama. But Boing knows now that since Obama has been re-elected it cannot weather 4 more years of Obama's economy and the additional cost of Obamacare without downsizing. Boeings sales were strong in recent years. But now it has to adjust it's workforce to deal with the costs of Obamacare and the projected severe cuts to the Defense Dept. budget which will impact it's sales of military aircraft.

Watch for more announcements of cutbacks and downsizing, probably right before Christmas.

OpenCurtain
10049
Points
OpenCurtain 11/09/12 - 03:35 pm
4
2
I heard the Obamacare magic number was 50

"The Augusta plant will remain in operation as a manufacturer of dryer bars, a process that will require about 40 employees."

So was this cut to also avoid the magic staffing number under Obamacare requirements?

Also while on the subject.
With NAFTA passed during Pres Clinton admin. why would ANY USA company continue operations in the USA, when all they have to do is move to Central America and setup shop at 1/4 the hourly employee costs, lower Medical costs and NO unions.

showboat
365
Points
showboat 11/09/12 - 03:35 pm
0
1
dichotomy, you want to blame
Unpublished

dichotomy, you want to blame everything on the President. I guess if the white guy had won this election, would you blame him!!!!

CryoCyberTronics
392
Points
CryoCyberTronics 11/09/12 - 03:35 pm
2
1
From the time my school class

From the time my school class at Tubman Jr. High School career orientation by the way a great subject to take. We went on a class trip to P&G and toured the plant and the GM gave everyone a bag of P&G goodies to take home and try, that was the day that made me wanted to work there one day. Maybe when they add a new production I may still get a chance...!!!

Fiat_Lux
16200
Points
Fiat_Lux 11/09/12 - 03:38 pm
3
1
Yeah I was Austin.

The meat of the article didn't come out for a few hours after the tickler got posted.

And I reported and edited at a city daily before, a Morris publication no less, and I know what I'm talking about. We used to hate it when reportable news happened after 9 pm but before 11 pm. Even stopped the presses before.

Fiat_Lux
16200
Points
Fiat_Lux 11/09/12 - 03:44 pm
8
1
I sincerely hope that every single person getting cut or moved

voted for the Big O, as in OboyAren'tWeSurprised!

I wonder how many hundreds and thousands of those illuminated citizens are scratching their heads and going, "Wha...?

ridesbrd
112
Points
ridesbrd 11/09/12 - 04:05 pm
1
9
CryoCyberTronics

You should aim higher than being a plant worker buddy.

dichotomy
36047
Points
dichotomy 11/09/12 - 04:07 pm
5
2
Not what they said.

ridesbrd......"They even say in the article that they have more jobs than the ones they are cutting here and could employ spouses too if they want to relocate"

No ridesbrd, that is not what they said. They said they have identified enough jobs in other locations for displaced workers and MAY be able to employ some spouses. Emphasis on MAY. The cutback here is a loss of 160 jobs and they only reference 50 new jobs in Alexandria, La. Anyway you cut it RC lost 160 good paying jobs. And my guess is that the plant will shut down entirely before the next 4 years are up.

tanbaby
1306
Points
tanbaby 11/09/12 - 04:41 pm
0
0
fiat_lux--most of those
Unpublished

fiat_lux--most of those hundreds and thousands of people who voted for him will have nothing to worry about..they aren't losing a thing...we will just have to work harder to cover their free food, phones, etc.....oh and health care....not the insurance that most will have to purchase, but the kind that you and i and the other working stiffs cover....

CobaltGeorge
169912
Points
CobaltGeorge 11/09/12 - 05:25 pm
6
2
It's Coming People..

No shot fired Revolution! Stock Market - Unemployment.

bcdude3
9
Points
bcdude3 11/09/12 - 05:36 pm
7
1
WOW 1st furlows @ SRS and

WOW 1st furlows @ SRS and now this ! How many more in the next 4 years

specsta
6709
Points
specsta 11/09/12 - 06:58 pm
3
7
Security

Job security is a thing of the past. We need more entrepreneurs to start their own businesses and end this dependence of working for some big corporation. A corporation is an unfeeling entity that could not care less if you have an ailing husband/wife, kids in college or a new mortgage. A corporation is only concerned about the bottom line, and the workers are expendable property.

Willow Bailey
20603
Points
Willow Bailey 11/09/12 - 07:10 pm
4
2
I think that was a message

I think that was a message straight from the Romney campaign, Specsta. Reduce regs, encourage small businesses to hire and expand. Not going to happen now. Increase the welfare/unemployment percentage for more government dependency and keep the dems in power.

KSL
139473
Points
KSL 11/09/12 - 09:15 pm
1
2
Dailyjobcuts.com

Dailyjobcuts.com

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