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PV inverter supplier SMA Solar is to lay off 425 full-time staff and discontinue China as a location as part of a restructuring plan announced in September in order to return the company to profitability quickly.

The planned restructuring measures, due to be implemented from January 2019, include the sale of the Chinese companies to the management there.

“With the measures that have now been resolved, the SMA Managing Board is demonstrating its commitment to Germany as a business location. The measures are aimed at reducing SMA’s fixed costs and making optimal use of our capacity at the headquarters by focusing on our core competencies, outsourcing and automating activities, and reorganizing structures. Unfortunately, the reduction of the global workforce by around 425 full-time positions is unavoidable in this context. It is very important to us to implement the planned staff reduction in a socially responsible way,” said SMA CEO Dr. Jürgen Reinert. “The sale of the business units in China to the management there will create good conditions for the positive further development of business on both sides. In order to secure SMA’s success in the long term, we will increasingly press ahead with the process begun to develop the company into a systems and solutions provider and will continue to invest in the future-oriented areas of energy management, storage integration, repowering, and digital business models.”

Of the job cuts, more than 100 relate to Germany and more than 300 to the foreign locations. 

In October, the long-standing CEO Pierre-Pascal Urbon suddenly stepped down from his executive role and said he planned to leave the company altogether at the end of December 2018.

In November, the firm lowered both its revenue and profit forecast again for 2018, citing continued ‘strong pricing pressure’ through November.

Tags: germany, restructuring, sma, job cuts, employment, inverters