Benteler to close its Opelika plant

OPELIKA, AL (WTVM) - After nine years, Benteler Automotive Corporation will be closing the doors of its facility in Opelika, affecting 120 employees.

"My concern is first all of the employees that will be displaced because of no fault of their own, so we need to help them get situate," states Opelika Mayor, Gary Fuller.

The German based company develops system modules and product components for the automotive industry.

Earlier this year, they announced that they were strategically repositioning all of its global manufacturing companies.

Four to five of Benteler's 170 plants will close in the next five to six months, including Opelika.

"Essentially all levels of that plant has been declining and for us it makes a lot more sense to move the equipment to other facilities rather than keeping people half occupied," explains Benteler Director of Communication for North America, Maryam Komejan.

Benteler is committed to helping those affected by the closing.

Severance packages and assistance in job placement are being discussed by the company now.

"There are packages being developed. We'll be helping with job fairs; we will be helping people resumes. We're going to provide as much support as we can," says Komejan.

The City of Opelika says they have had businesses express interest in Benteler's facility located in the Northeast Opelika Industrial Park, but the first priority is helping those employees impacted by the closure.

"Our primary concern is getting those folks placed with other opportunities," explains Fuller.

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