AMIENS, France — Goodyear management has withdrawn its proposed voluntary plan for the restructuring of its farm tire plant in Amiens, a move that jeopardizes the proposed sale of the unit and could lead to its being closed.
"We will consider all other options for the future of Amiens North," a Goodyear spokesman said in reponse to a query from European Rubber Journal, a London-based companion publication of Tire Business.
The union representing workers at the plant, the CGT, claimed in June that Goodyear had conceded several key points in their three-year labor negotitations, but Goodyear denied the union's claims. The CGT has not yet commented on Goodyear's latest statement.
At stake are more than 1,200 jobs at the 53-year-old factory.
The Goodyear spokesman added: "We really regret that the negotiations have not led to an agreement. We believe that none of the available options would provide the 1,200 Amiens North employees and their families with the type of support and benefits that could have been provided to them with the proposed Voluntary Departure Plan."
Goodyear has two tire plants in Amiens. The other one, a car/light truck tire plant known as Amiens-South, was acquired by Goodyear in 1999 as part of its deal for Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd.'s European and North American assets.
Goodyear had struck a deal nearly two years ago to sell the plant to Titan International Inc., but that deal depended on Goodyear's being able to trim the workforce at the plant in connection with a phaseout of car tire production there.
That deal lapsed in December, although Titan Chairman Maurice Taylor Jr. has said on a number of occasions since that Titan is still interested in buying the plant and with it Goodyear's farm tire business in Europe and the Middle East.
Goodyear originally put the business up for sale in May 2009. The purchase price was expected to be about $17 million.
Mr. Taylor has estimated on a number of occasions the business represents about $400 million in annual revenue short term.