Archived Story

Russell Brands to cut 190 jobs

Published 10:15am Saturday, January 5, 2013

Russell Brands, LLC. will soon be cutting 190 of the 390 employees working in its Alexander City decoration facility.

No other Russell operations in Alexander City will be impacted by the workforce reduction.

Tony Greeson, vice president of manufacturing, said the reduction was necessary for the company to keep up with its competition.

“The competitiveness of the apparel market makes for a very difficult business environment and requires that we constantly seek the most cost-effective production available,” Greeson said in a press release. “Unfortunately, the Alexander City decoration operation is no longer cost competitive relative to other production we have around the world.”

Greeson said the decoration facility will not be closed completely.

“We are maintaining a decoration facility in Alexander City, but by restructuring the operations there, we can position the company to be more competitive,” Greeson said. “This decision is in no way a reflection on the dedication and efforts of our associates in Alexander City.”

Employees were notified Thursday via a letter in accordance with the federal law, which stipulates layoffs affecting more than 100 employees be announced 60 days in advance. The layoffs are expected to occur on or around March 5 and will near completion by early July.

Alexander City Mayor Charles Shaw said he was disheartened by the news of the layoffs.

“This is a sad day for Alexander City, especially for those that a losing their jobs,” Shaw said.  “Jobs are just not plentiful at this point in time, and hopefully we will be able to replace some of these.”

Shaw said that attracting new businesses will remain a top priority for the city and for organizations like the Lake Martin Area Economic Development Alliance.

Shaw said the EDA currently has numerous active projects, but attracting new businesses to town is a numbers game that often takes numerous rejections before one prospect materializes.

“We do all we can to present the city, present the workforce and present everything good we have,” Shaw said. “We know this is a great town, but it is all about whether these companies can come here and make money.”