About 75 jobs are to go at West Midlands carpet firm Brintons – just weeks after the firm was rescued by a US private equity giant in a £40 million takeover.
The job losses were announced as the firm revealed it was reducing the number of Kidderminster offices from three to two, and vacating its Exchange Street site by the end of November.
A full consultation process will be undertaken, but it is expected that the majority of the workers affected will be office-based staff in Kidderminster.
Brintons employs 1,700 people globally, of which 700 are in the UK. The company says it aims to secure the staff reductions through voluntary means.
Don Coates, managing director of the Kidderminster-based company, said: “We deeply regret the loss of any jobs but these steps are necessary to reduce our costs in light of worsening economic conditions and return the company to profitability.
“To compete effectively in the global market, we need to change the way we do business – we need to deliver more with less.
“With the recent investment from Carlyle, we have the opportunity to secure the long-term future of the business which has seen the impact of the unprecedented challenges facing carpet manufacturers during the downturn.”
In early September it was announced that Washington-based Carlyle Group, the third largest private equity firm in the world, had taken over the cash-stricken Kidderminster carpet manufacturer.
The US takeover wiped out £20 million of debt and guaranteed a further £20 million of investment, but severed the Brinton family ties at Kidderminster after 228 years.
Guy Burnell, son-in-law of ex-chairman Michael Brinton, subsequently accused the Carlyle Group of sidelining the Brinton family through the takeover.
“We’ve been disenfranchised and pushed to one side,” he said at the time. "They’ve been trying to engineer a solution which doesn’t involve us. It was taken from under our feet without our consent.
But Mr Coates said the business would not have survived without the transaction, with the family unable to commit further funds.