SCHOTT North America, Inc. announced that it will move and centralize a portion of its optical glass production to its headquarters in Mainz, Germany. The decision will affect up to 80 of the 230 workers at its Duryea, Pennsylvania plant and is scheduled to be implemented in March 2015. SCHOTT will provide outplacement services to displaced employees and, if available, offer alternative jobs at the Duryea plant and other North American SCHOTT locations.
The decision only impacts select optical glass production inside SCHOTT’s Advanced Optics Division. It does not affect SCHOTT’s non-continuous melting operations, which will continue to manufacture laser glass, infra-red glass, and other specific optical glasses. In addition, SCHOTT Duryea will continue to remain a trusted and reliable partner for its customers because the site will continue to perform as the Division’s North American customer service hub. SCHOTT’s North America Research & Development Center, also located in Duryea, is not affected by this decision.
“Worldwide demand for optical glass has been negatively impacted by the advent of smaller, hand-held technologies,” says Michael Brown, Site Manager of SCHOTT’s plant in Duryea. “Smartphones have decreased demand for traditional video and still cameras, thus necessitating the need to strategically restructure this portion of our business.”
By consolidating a portion of the optical glass production to its headquarters in Germany, the company centralizes its worldwide production of optical glass, which has been manufactured in Germany ever since the founding of the company in 1884.
“We remain confident and excited about the opportunities ahead of us utilizing innovative processes and materials that allow us to explore new and growing markets for Duryea,” said Brown.