Bose Corp. is laying off 200 workers from its speaker plant near Blythewood as it transitions jobs to Malaysia, a company spokeswoman confirmed Friday.
The company, which peaked at 950 workers in 2003, according to previous reports in The State, has been shedding workers since then in several rounds of layoffs.
When the newest layoffs are complete, the plant could be down to around 200 workers, based on projections from previous layoff announcements. Spokeswoman Carolyn Cinotti said the remaining number of workers in South Carolina will be higher than 200, but she would not say how much higher Friday. Cinotti said the company has 9,000 employees worldwide but does not break down the number of employees at each Bose office or plant or by region.
The company is building a manufacturing facility in Malaysia in 2013 to support its Asia-Pacific business, Cinotti said. During the transition, some of the work done in Blythewood will be transferred to plants in Mexico, she said.
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“Bose is a global company with customers, stores, resellers and subsidiaries around the world,” Cinotti said in a statement. “We’re restructuring our manufacturing operations to respond to the distribution demands of a global business.
“The Bose South Carolina plant currently builds and ships products to our customers in North America – and overseas to our customers in Asia-Pacific.”
Bose products will continue to be made in South Carolina, Cinotti said, and the plant will continue to provide service repairs, remanufacturing and distribution in North America.
The Blythewood plant, which opened in 1996, has laid off hundreds of workers since 2003, when it cut 250 jobs. Another 160 layoffs were announced in 2004, and 149 job cuts were made in 2009.