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[08 FEB 00] AP GROUP NEWS
AP Hydraulics Cuts 190 Jobs

A decision by one of Leamington’s best known companies to shed nearly 200 jobs is being blamed on the ceasing in production of the Mini.

AP Hydraulics, part of the Tachbrook Road-based AP Group has announced that it will cut its workforce by 40% in the next 30 months.

Currently the company employs around 500 people but 190 of these will be made redundant as a result of this announcement.

Bosses at the company are claiming that recent news that the famous Mini car would no longer be made has contributed significantly to this decision.

Managing director of AP Products Dave Nesbitt believes losing such a contract would effect any company.

He said:

"The Mini contract has been an exceptional one for us and a very difficult one to replace because of its size and breadth.

"Naturally we are sad to have to reduce jobs but we stress that through our investment programme we are building the strength of the company for the future."

AP was a major supplier to the Mini, which will cease production in June this year, and is now looking for other ways to increase its business, including investing in new areas.

It is hoping to become a specialist OEM manufacturer of braking systems and components, and Nesbitt is certain this is the way forward.

He said:

"We have taken a long hard look at our position and formed the view that there are certain areas in which we can provide a highly competitive product and service to our customers.

"It is in these areas that we will concentrate our efforts and upgrade our facilities to optimise our performance to customers and build for the long term future of our company."

Most employees at the factory will be offered voluntary redundancy and AP are hoping that they can meet the 190 figure without compulsory action.

Nesbitt admitted that the decision to reduce the workforce had to be taken in order to keep AP’s prices at a low enough level.

He said:

"We supply an extremely competitive industry and we need to reduce costs through greater efficiency while at the same time continuously improving quality.

"These are the major priorities in everything we do and this latest investment underlines our commitment to the future success of AP Hydraulics."
    

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