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Tire Maker Announces Layoffs, Management Shuffle

March 13, 1991

AKRON, Ohio (AP) _ Goodyear Tire & Rubber today announced it was laying off 1,100 salaried employees and shuffling its board of directors in anticipation of a loss for the first quarter of 1991.

The layoffs are part of a previously announced program that will cut the work force by 3,000, the company said in a news release.

″We are biting the bullet even harder to improve our competitive and financial situation,″ said Goodyear Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Tom H. Barrett.

The changes at the upper-management level wipe out two executive vice president positions responsible for the global tire division and the general products group and replace them with the re-established position of corporate president, Goodyear said.

Until the reshuffling, the chairman and CEO also served as president.

Tire division President Jacques R. Sardas will retire April 1 after 33 years at Goodyear, the company said. General products President Hoyt M. Wells will assume the position of corporate president.

Another position, executive vice president for engineering, research and development, will be eliminated when the current officeholder, F. Vincent Prus, retires later this year, the company said.

The duties of the office will be incorporated into the position of executive vice president for corporate supply, to be filled by former tire manufacturing Vice President William J. Sharp.

The salaried worker layoffs are expected to bring a one-time, pre-tax charge of about $65 million against first-quarter earnings, Goodyear said.

Goodyear expected a loss for the quarter even before the unusual charges, Barrett said. The company earned $20.9 million on $2.7 billion in the first quarter of 1990.

Goodyear and other tire makers have been struggling as the auto market slumped and the general economy slowed.

Bridgestone-Firestone announced layoffs at two plants Tuesday as it began contract negotiations with the United Rubber Workers.

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