PITTSFIELD, Maine — UTC Fire and Security will shut down its operations here in March 2015, resulting in more than 300 layoffs.
UTC’s 123,500-foot factory serves as Pittsfield’s second-largest employer and produces commercial equipment, such as detectors, fire panels and signaling equipment under the Edwards brand. Roughly 25 percent of UTC’s employees live in Pittsfield, Bangor Daily News reports.
Closing the facility is part of UTC’s realignment strategy to reduce its overall square footage internationally, according to Ashley Barrie, a spokeswoman for the firm.
“In an effort to reduce complexity and improve our ability to serve customers, Edwards plans to close its Pittsfield, Maine facility and move production to three existing facilities currently producing similar products,” Barrie said in a statement.
UTC plans to relocate as many as 100 jobs to the firm’s Lincolnton, N.C., plant. The company also plans to ship jobs to its Mexico- and China-based facilities, the Morning Sentinel reports.
Barrie maintains that UTC will work “closely with employees to ensure the transition is handled as best possible.”
The firm will hold meetings with the employees “outline options including consideration for available positions at other facilities and comprehensive severance benefits,” Barrie stated.
Benefits will include placement assistance and continued access to UTC’s Employee Scholar Program, under which qualified employees can get tuition, books and fees paid for up to four years.
The Pittsfield plant has been in operation since 1956. In 2005, General Electric bought the plant when it purchased SPX Corp., owner of Edwards Systems Technology for nearly $1.4 billion. United Technologies took over the plant in 2010 when the firm purchased GE Security.