Husqvarna relocating HQ from Augusta to Charlotte

FILE
Gent Simmons (left), Husqvarna Product Trainer, shakes Augusta Mayor Deke Copenhaver's hand after presenting the politician with a protective apparel powerkit at the company's Product Awareness Day in Augusta in August 2007.

Husqvarna Outdoor Products Inc. has already started the relocation of its headquarters to Charlotte, N.C., the result of a global reorganization plan by the Sweden-based lawn and garden equipment maker.

Not all of its approximate 100 employees in Augusta will be making the move to North Carolina, said Roger Leon, Husqvarna’s director of North and Latin America sales.

“Not all of the employees will be asked to relocate. Through the consolidation of the offices, there are some people here that are doing functions that were very similar to what we’re doing in Augusta,” Mr. Leon said.

He said he in unsure of the exact number of Augusta employees that will lose their jobs with the company.

Augusta was home to the company’s North American administrative staff, sales and service staff for consumer products division, purchasers for wheeled products and the industrial design center.

In June, the global headquarters in Stockholm implemented a reorganization plan that consolidated six business sectors into five operating units – one of the reasons for the consolidation of sales and service personnel to its existing Charlotte office.

“The other factor is just the general economic conditions that are driving us to find synergies throughout the company,” Mr. Leon said.

Mr. Leon said the transition will take place over the next six to 12 months, although some Augusta employees are already being shifted. The company’s lease for office space on Stevens Creek Road will expire in the middle of 2010, he said.

Augusta has been home to the company’s headquarters since its spinoff in 2006 from former owner Electrolux.

Despite Husqvarna’s plans to move, Electrolux has no plans to relocate its offices, said company spokesman Tony Evans. The appliance manufacturer maintains its North American headquarters on Bobby Jones Expressway.

Husqvarna is the world's largest producer of lawn mowers, chainsaws and portable gas-powered garden equipment such as trimmers and blowers. Its brand names are Husqvarna, Gardena, Flymo, Partner, McCulloch, Poulan and Weed Eater.

Globally, it has 15,000 employees.

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