GE’s Lufkin Industries closing plant, making layoffs

GE Oil & Gas is closing a plant in Lufkin and eliminating 262 positions at the plant and at one other facility.

This is the third major job reduction by GE’s Lufkin Industries this year and the second at its Foundry plant, which is being closed through this mass layoff, the company said in a letter to the Texas Workforce Commission. Many oil field services companies have implemented major job cuts during the ongoing oil downturn.

The reduction of 176 of the 187 jobs at the Foundry plant will begin Sept. 10 and conclude at the end of the month. Jobs range from manufacturing and engineering positions to sales and human resources jobs. Another 86 jobs are being cut at its Buck Creek facility in Lufkin, but that plant is remaining open.

Lufkin Industries, which was acquired by GE in 2013 for $3.3 billion, previously cut about 149 jobs at the Foundry plant from February through April. At the time, the company listed 358 jobs at the plant. Lufkin Industries also eliminated about 330 jobs at its Buck Creek facility earlier this year.

“This was a tough decision to make, but one we must make for the long-term health of the business,” GE Oil & Gas spokeswoman Laura Bauer said in an email response. “This is not a reflection of the commitment and hard work of our employees who have worked with dedication and professionalism. We will provide affected employees with resources to help transition to other employment at GE or an outside company. While our footprint in Angelina County is changing, we are committed to being a strong business and community partner.”

Bauer said GE is assessing its options regarding what to do with the Foundry plant and property moving forward.

Lufkin Industries is an artificial lift and parts company that services the oil and gas sector. The company is named for the city 120 miles northeast of Houston. Lufkin Industries had more than 4,400 employees at the time of the 2013 acquisition.

The Foundry plant is a union plant though and some of the employees will have transfer or bumping rights, according to the letter. An employee with bumping rights may be able to take the job of a less senior employee.

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