GE Lighting Shuts Two Production Plants in U.S.

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GE Lighting recently announced it will be closing two traditional lighting production plants in Lexington, Kentucky in U.S. by August 2017, reported Lexington KY News.

Closure of the two plants is estimated to affect about 400 jobs in the city.

The two plants are Lexington Lamp Plant and the Somerset Glass Plant. The Lexington Lamp Plant manufactures traditional luminaires, and employs about 139 workers, while the Somerset Glass Plant mainly manufactures halogen lamps and employs 71 people.

Consumer demands for traditional lighting products has hit a record low, and as a result, the Lexington plant production capacity is at about 15%, stated GE in a written statement.

"Looking forward, GE Lighting will focus entirely on driving innovation and growth in LED technology," the GE spokesperson said in a statement. "By 2020, half of the U.S. market’s consumer light bulb sockets will be LED and more than 80% of all global lighting revenues will come from LED."

The Somerset plant is operating at about 20% capacity due to market demand shifts towards LED lighting, said Jack Mazurak, a spokesperson for the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development.

"The Commonwealth, including the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development, is responding in the immediacy," Mazurak added in a statement, "and will continue to work in the long term to lessen the impact to the affected GE lighting employees in Kentucky."

The company’s decision is subject to a 60-day decision-bargaining period, said the GE spokesperson, indicating the local union has two months to request for an alternative plan.

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