Central Moloney to lay off more than 50 employees in response to lower demand

Central Moloney Inc. is in the process of laying off more than 50 employees at its Pine Bluff facility in response to a less active than forecast tropical weather season in the southeast United States.

“We had incredibly strong summer months and part of our efforts to increase staff earlier this year was in anticipation of this activity as well as being in position in case our customers needed to respond to infrastructure damage from tropical systems,” Chris Hart, Central Moloney Inc. executive vice president, said Wednesday. “Now we are in the process of reducing staff to effectively manage our costs.”

Hart said that the company works to ensure that it stays as competitive as possible.

“We have a corporate effort to make ourselves as efficient as we possibly can,” Hart said. “This current round of layoffs is part of our continued effort to be the most competitive and cost effective manufacturer in the industry. We are already the leader in quality.”

Hart said that Central Moloney plans to continue to increase its market share to the point that it will be able to maximize its profits once the market rebounds.

Hart said that management continues to work with the employee union — International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1658 — to arrange layoffs so that those who have been on the job the shortest period of time are the first to be affected.

“Our goal is to keep the most senior employees here because they’ve earned it and because they are the most knowledgeable,” Hart said. “We do this in cooperation with the union to minimize the disruption to and displacement of individuals and to maximize our potential. This is a major component of our collective bargaining agreement with the local. It has been in place for many, many years.”

Central Moloney Inc. manufactures electrical transformers and related equipment from its plant at 2400 W. Sixth Ave.