The Energizer battery company is closing its St. Albans plant and laying off 165 workers.
The company says the closure, scheduled for next September, is part of a restructuring effort meant to trim its global workforce by 10 percent.
The St. Albans plant makes lithium batteries that power many portable electronic devices. But there has been a worldwide decline in demand for those kinds of replaceable batteries with the increasing popularity of rechargeable devices, like smartphones.
Gov. Peter Shumlin issued a statement Friday saying, "The
announced closing of the Energizer plant in St. Albans, due to decreasing
global consumer demand for lithium batteries, is obviously unwelcome news. My
administration is acting quickly to help those impacted by the loss of these
jobs to find new opportunities in St. Albans. While this news is a blow to
Franklin County, I am encouraged by the many signs of economic vitality in the
region. My hope - and our plan - is that the families affected by this closing
will find opportunities in other areas of this growing regional economy. We
will work tirelessly to ensure that happens in the coming year, before the
plant closes its doors in the next 9 to 12 months."
In addition to closing the St. Albans facility, Energizer is also shuttering plants in Missouri and Malaysia. The global restructuring should be complete by the summer of 2014. It is expected to save Energizer $200 million a year.
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