Steel News

thyssenkrupp, Labor Union Agree to Long-Term Strategic Plan, Coronavirus Curtailments 

3/25/2020 - thyssenkrupp and the IG Metall labor union have come to terms on a plan in which the company will shed 3,000 steel jobs over six years, but will invest EUR800 million in its plants during that time, thyssenkrupp has announced. 

"We have put off problems for too long and shied away from tough decisions. The agreements give us room for maneuver so that steel can remain competitive in the long term," said Klaus Keysberg, executive board chairman of thyssenkrupp’s materials services group.

"An immediate and comprehensive restructuring is an absolute prerequisite for this. We will lose no time here," he added. 

The company said one-third of the jobs to be cut are administrative positions. Another 1,200 jobs will be lopped through the optimization of its production network, and the remaining 800 are to come from its heavy plate unit, for which the company said it sees no development prospects. 

At the same time, thyssenkrupp said it will make investments to not only optimize its plants but to adjust its product mix and focus on value-added steels. 

“These include multiphase steels and lightweight steels as well as grades with high surface quality. In addition, the production of high-quality, non-grain-oriented electrical steels, which are becoming essential for electromobility, will be strengthened,” the company said.

The company said it also reached an agreement with the union on measures designed to sustain the business through the coronavirus pandemic. 

"We will have to go into short-time work at many locations in the coming weeks. This will initially affect production-related areas, but also administration. We are taking a close look at all of them to see when which measures make sense. Even when we run out of work, we will try to keep everyone in employment so that we can get back on track after the crisis," said Oliver Burkhard, the company’s chief human resources officer.