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General Electric cutting back on energy division, especially nuclear

Clock Ticks for French Workers as GE Confronts Bloated Legacy, Bloomberg, By Ania Nussbaum,January 5, 2018, 

  • CEO Flannery holds fire on job cuts in France due to pledges
  • Amid parliamentary probe, unions say posts will eventually go

French workers were spared in General Electric Co.’s decision to axe thousands of jobs, but they won’t be protected for long.

The beleaguered U.S. industrial company is seeking to trim its bloated power division just two years after acquiring French rival Alstom SA’s turbine-making operations. Yet cutting jobs in France wasn’t part of GE’s plan unveiled last month to eliminate 12,000 positions worldwide.

Instead, French workers were shielded by guarantees offered by former Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Immelt to clinch the $10 billion takeover. As he sought crucial French government backing for the deal, Immelt pledged to not only maintain existing employment levels, but add 1,000 net jobs by the end of 2018.

Now, the Alstom bet is looking increasingly ill-timed. The outlook for power activity has soured and GE’s new CEO, John Flannery, is fighting to reverse a deep slump in shares by cutting $1 billion of costs at the unit. Under pressure from investors, he’s narrowing the Boston-based company’s focus and selling assets. French labor groups say the moves have made French job cuts inevitable, since GE’s pledge only lasts through the end of this year.

 “It’s going to hurt” starting in 2019, Helene Gonon, the CFE-CGC union representative at a GE site in Belfort, said by phone. “The life is slowly being sucked out of our plants.”

Slashing Workforce

GE is cutting back after swallowing Alstom’s energy business in 2015…….


January 7, 2018 - Posted by | general

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