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Kennametal To Cut up to 500 Jobs

November 17, 1999

LATROBE, Pa. (AP) _ Machine tool maker Kennametal Inc. plans to cut as many as 500 jobs from its work force of 14,000 worldwide and close or cut back operations at several plants because of declining earnings.

The company also disclosed Wednesday it might sell JLK Direct Distribution Inc., its distribution subsidiary that accounted for $532 million of its parent’s $1.9 billion in revenue last year.

Kennametal said the moves are part of a plan to improve earnings and sales, cut debt and focus on Kennametal’s core businesses of manufacturing metal and developing metals technology.

Chief executive Markos I. Tambakeras, who took the helm of the Latrobe-based company July 1, said its ``priorities will be to stabilize, refocus, deliver top tier financial performance _ and grow.″

Spokesman Charles Glazer said company officials have not yet decided which of 14 to 18 of its 200 sales offices, plants and warehouses to close, consolidate or downsize. The 400 to 500 jobs will be cut at Kennametal facilities worldwide, he said.

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