North Carolina manufacturer to close, puts 475 out of work

A North Carolina manufacturing plant that makes small motors for windshield wipers, power windows and other auto parts said it was closing, putting nearly 500 people out of work.

DENSO Manufacturing told local economic development officials on Tuesday that layoffs at the Greenville plant will occur later this year and that it will close by January 2023, media reported. This decision affects 475 workers, who were informed on Tuesday of the impending closure.

Since 2019, DENSO’s parent company has reorganized, said Brad Hufford, vice president of business development for the Greenville-ENC Alliance. Hufford said he believed the decision to close the plant was the result of corporate rationalization.

The company said in a statement that the shutdown was part of an effort to optimize its manufacturing operations in North America. DENSO’s nearest plant is in Statesville, 368 km west of Greenville.

Bridgette LaRose, corporate communications manager for DENSO, had no further comment on the shutdown.

The Japanese-owned factory opened as ASMO Greenville in 1995. In 2013, DENSO began a $50 million expansion that included an eight-year incentive agreement with Pitt County to create 200 jobs. The county paid the company more than $187,000 a year.

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