DuPont Co., second only to Dow Chemical Co. among U.S. chemical manufacturers, announced Monday that it would cut 3,500 jobs, or 6 percent of its workforce, according to wire service reports.
The job reductions are expected to contribute $325 million in annual savings, reported the BBC News web site, as part of a plan announced last fall to reduce costs by $900 million a year by 2005.
About 70 percent of the job reductions will take place in the United States and Canada, reported Reuters, quoting a DuPont spokesman; the 30 percent overseas will largely be cut in Western Europe. The wire service added that roughly 3,000 jobs will be eliminated through severance programs; the balance of the reduction will come through attrition. An additional 450 contract workers will also be released.
Reuters also noted that these cuts do not include employees of Invista. The sale of that clothing-and-fiber business is expected to be completed by DuPont later this month for $4.2 billion, added the wire service.
DuPont also plans to save $375 million by changing its procurement patterns, added the BBC News — 6 percent of its expenditures for supplies and services.
Reuters observed that analysts believe Dupont has trailed Dow in cost reductions as well as earnings. Last year, according to the wire service, Dow cut 4,000 jobs, or 8 percent of its workforce.