Wacker Chemie AG announced its initial plans for its “Zukunft gestalten” (Shape the Future) efficiency program. WACKER expects to save €250 million a year by reducing material costs and in-house services and by creating a leaner company structure. The program’s central task is to realign WACKER’s organizational structure clearly with customer requirements and, thus, support the Group’s profitable growth.
As a result, more than 1,000 jobs are expected to go by the end of 2022. The job cuts will affect WACKER’s administrative departments and the indirect, non-operational functions of its business divisions. The main part of the reduction will occur at German sites, more than 80 percent. Together with employee representatives, WACKER intends to prepare a package of measures to reduce its workforce in a socially responsible manner. Possible instruments include retirement, semi-retirement, and severance agreements. If the measures are successful, there should be no need for compulsory layoffs. WACKER has a total of 14,500 employees worldwide, around 10,000 of whom work in Germany.
“We are preparing for a harsher competitive environment – both in our polysilicon business and at our chemical divisions,” said CEO Rudolf Staudigl, explaining the program. “Shape the Future is a comprehensive approach. Our aim is not only to achieve significant cost-savings, but also to decisively strengthen WACKER for tomorrow’s challenges and secure a long-term competitive-edge,” added Staudigl.
“After analyzing the status quo thoroughly, we have now presented our first outline of WACKER’s new structure to employee representatives. Together, we will discuss and evaluate our ideas further,” said Executive Board member Christian Hartel. “We will continue to work closely on this with employee representatives and enter into constructive negotiations promptly. We are confident of finding good and fair solutions to achieve our objectives,” emphasized Hartel.