October 18, 2006
Vol 1 | Num 7


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Hurd Cuts Back on Wisconsin Workforce

Hurd Windows & Doors Inc. is planning to lay off 100 of about 270 workers at its facilities in Merrill, WI. The window and door manufacturer points to declining demand, due to the fall-off in new home construction, as well as plans to expand vinyl window production in Ohio to explain the decision.

While it still has two plants in Merrill, the manufacturer closed a third plant earlier this year, transferring workers from the closed facility to other locations, according to a report in the Wausau Daily Herald. The company also operates two plants in Medford, WI, where it is based. “There is no denying that our company’s wagon is directly hitched to the performance of the U.S. housing industry,” says Dominic Truniger, Hurd general manager. “When less building permits are issued, on top of a decline in building starts, it can only translate to one economic factor—less demand.”

The second reason behind the workforce reduction relates to Hurd’s plans to shift its focus from the new home market to remodeling. “In order to secure the organization’s longevity, we must be able to not just sustain, but grow our current position as the preeminent and prominent window and door provider. To do that, we must have the right product for the correct market segments, and realigning resources is a necessary course in accomplishing and maintaining this goal,” Truniger states.

An integral element in achieving Hurd’s growth plans is the recent completion of a new 200,000-square-foot production facility located in Ohio, Truniger points out. “The vinyl window and door niche is an area Hurd has made significant progress in, and quite frankly, it needs to be one of our critical areas of focus. The new plant will ultimately have a great impact on the overall success of Hurd and all its employees.”

Hurd parent, Monarch Holdings, announced construction of a new Ohio facility earlier this year for its American Weather Seal unit.

 

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