DETROIT (AP) — Ford — facing heavy costs for new technology and slowing U.S. car sales — is cutting 1,400 non-factory jobs in North America and Asia Pacific this year in an effort to boost profits and rescue its sagging stock price.
The company will offer voluntary early retirement and separation packages to around 10 percent of salaried workers in departments such as sales, marketing and human resources. It expects the actions to be complete by the end of September.
The cuts are the biggest to Ford’s U.S. white collar staff since 2007, when 7,200 workers took voluntary buyout packages. Ford believes it will meet its targets by voluntary means, spokesman Mike Moran said Wednesday.
“We remain focused on the three strategic priorities that will create value and drive profitable growth, which include fortifying the profit pillars in our core business, transforming traditionally underperforming areas of our core business and investing aggressively, but prudently, in emerging opportunities,” Ford said in an email sent to employees early Wednesday. “Reducing costs and becoming as lean and efficient as possible also remain part of that work.”
There was no immediate comment from President Donald Trump, who needled Ford during his campaign over its plans to build a new small car plant in Mexico. Ford canceled its Mexico plant in January, opting instead to add 700 workers to a suburban Detroit plant in 2018 to make electric and self-driving vehicles. In March, Ford announced a plan to create or retain 130 jobs at a Michigan engine plant. Trump applauded both actions.
“Car companies coming back to U.S. JOBS! JOBS! JOBS!” Trump tweeted in March.