DIXON and STERLING (WIFR) -- After completing a study of its operations in Sterling and Dixon, Illinois, Caterpillar Inc. informed employees on June 6, 2014 that it will consolidate production and distribution operations to its facility in Menominee, Michigan. All four plants (two in Sterling, one in Dixon and one in Menominee) are Anchor Coupling facilities. Anchor Coupling is a wholly owned subsidiary of Caterpillar Inc.
The company says consolidating production and logistics to one location will enable them to better meet customers' expectations by reducing costs, driving efficiency and utilizing existing assets.
Anchor Coupling manufactures hydraulic hose assemblies for Cat machines as well as other original equipment manufacturers in the production plants in Sterling and Dixon. The second facility in Sterling is a distribution facility, a function currently performed in Menominee. Couplings are also currently produced in Menominee.
“We recognize that this decision will be difficult for our employees,” said Greg Folley, vice president with responsibility for Caterpillar’s Remanufacturing, Components and Work Tools Division. “We value and appreciate the work that our Sterling and Dixon employees have contributed and their dedication to producing and distributing quality products. This decision is not about the performance of these plants, but rather about improving efficiency across the component manufacturing footprint and reducing the cost structure driven by three independent facilities, while providing the highest quality products to our customers.”
The plant will ramp down production beginning in the fourth quarter 2014 with the final transition to be completed in the first quarter 2015.
The transition will impact approximately 170 full-time Illinois employees. Employees who are displaced will be offered severance packages from the company and outplacement services from appropriate agencies to ensure they have the necessary support during this transition.