XALT Energy to lay off almost 40 Midland workers - WNEM TV 5

XALT Energy to lay off almost 40 Midland workers

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MIDLAND, MI (WNEM) -

Nearly 40 Midland workers will lose their job.

XALT Energy announced it will lay off 37 workers at the battery manufacturer's Midland plant.

The announcement comes after a company XALT Energy supplies batteries for - Los Angeles Metro - moved to a Chinese manufacturer, the company said.

“This is a premier customer to XALT and the order for Los Angeles was an important component of our 2018 sales forecast,” said CEO Richard Cundiff. “It’s very frustrating for us, because, just as the North American market for electric buses is starting to take off, the playing field has tilted again to China.” 

The change will also affect 12 jobs at XALT's Pontiac facility.

Last year the company laid off employees after the Chinese government enacted a policy shutting out all non-Chinese battery manufactures from the Chinese vehicle market, the company said.

“As XALT is a U.S. manufacturer, Chinese bus companies who desire to use our superior quality batteries are no longer eligible for the significant subsidies which are available from the Chinese government and driving the largest electric bus market in the world,” Cundiff said. “However, Chinese companies are free to sell into the U.S. which is particularly frustrating, because about 80 percent of the cost of a bus in the U.S. is funded by the federal government through our tax dollars.”

The reductions will include both salary and hourly employees, Cundiff said.

"XALT Energy is providing severance packages, including extending healthcare benefits, and outplacement support and he remains optimistic about the company’s long-term outlook," the company said in a press release. 

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