It’s been a long time coming, but PSA has finally done it; the parent company of Peugeot and Citroen is cutting 8,000 jobs and closing an assembly plant outside Paris, as the carmaker tries to cope with a sagging market and excess capacity.
Of the 8,000 jobs being shed, 3,600 are not related to assembly work, while 3,000 are expected to come from the Aulnay plant outside France’s capital. 1,400 will come from the Rennes plant, which builds larger vehicles like the Citroen C5 and Peugeot 508, models that have seen demand drop off in the wake of Europe’s economic downturn.
According to Reuters, PSA’s plants are burning $244 million a month, with cash flow not expected to turn positive until 2015. PSA’s first-half losses in 2012 amounted to $857.5 million. With significant exposure to troubled markets in Europe (i.e. the PIIGS countries), no low-cost brand (like Dacia for Renault) and an uncompetitive small car lineup for Peugeot, the company’s fortunes are hardly bright.
The move by PSA could be the catalyst for a wave of restructuring moves across Europe. Carlos Ghosn, head of Renault-Nissan, told Reuters in March that “The day somebody’s able to restructure heavily in Europe, it’s going to force all carmakers to do it,” while Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne has long advocated for a way to reduce capacity, via closing plants or finding additional ways to take advantage of it.