Kongsberg Automotive cuts 7,000 jobs amid coronavirus spread

Kongsberg Automotive

Auto parts maker Kongsberg Automotive has terminated or furloughed two-thirds of workers in recent weeks as demand declined due to coronavirus pandemic, slashing full-time staff by about 7,000 people, the firm stated on Friday.

The company, headquartered in Zurich and listed in Oslo, prepares to raise about 100 million euros ($108.4 million) in stocks and convertible bonds and has secured extra bank funding of 20 million euros ($21.61 million), it added.

In the last week of March, revenues dropped by more than half as auto and truck makers stopped or limited production, and the drop in demand is still building, it stated.

“It is unknown and impossible to accurately estimate when, whether or to what extent, the end-user vehicle demand will get back to previous levels,” the company stated. “The likelihood of a downcycle seems high.”

Global headcount is now less below 3,900 people, down from 10,900 full-time workers at plants in Europe, Asia and North America at the beginning of the year, Kongsberg Automotive said.

“Due to the considerable uncertainties about the course and duration of the corona pandemic, we cannot provide an updated outlook for 2020 for the time being,” it included.

Coronavirus has so far infected over 1,213,927 people and killed 66,652 worldwide.

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