BALA CYNWYD, Penn.—Hamilton, Ont.’s manufacturing industry has received another blow. PaperWorks Industries Inc. is planning to close its Hamilton plant by July of next year, resulting in the loss of 180 jobs.
The U.S.-based paperboard packaging supplier announced an $11 million expansion to Kitchener, Ont.’s Boehmer Box earlier this year, and has decided to consolidate all of its Canadian folding carton production at that facility. The company said it expects the production shift to be complete by May 2016, while the Hamilton factory will be shut down by July.
“Because the Hamilton facility is only 75 kilometers away from the Kitchener manufacturing plant, it made sense from a production and asset utilization perspective to consolidate production under one roof. The Kitchener plant is more modern and has newer equipment, which translates into more efficient output,” Kevin Kwilinski, president and CEO of Paperworks, said.
Though bleak news for Hamilton, which will lose a factory that has been producing boxes for decades, a number of the company’s Hamilton employees may be able to secure work at Boehmer Box, which Paperworks recently acquired as part of a deal with CanAmPac. Paperworks said part of the reason for announcing the plant’s shutdown nine months in advance is to give its Hamilton’s workers the chance to apply for new positions in Kitchener.
“The company envisions offering employment opportunities at Kitchener to more than 50 per cent of Hamilton’s 180 workers,” Paperworks said.
The company said in August that the expansion of Boehmer Box will create 150 jobs across all areas of pre-press and production at the Kitchener facility.