Corning Shifting Gorilla Glass Production to Cheaper South Korea

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Corning the company that supplies the Gorillia Glass used in many smartphones has announced that it is shifting production from Japan to Korea.

The decision follows its agreement with Samsung last year, and its buyout of their joint-venture, which meant it is able to make use of spare factory capacity at the Korean factory to cut costs.

The company said that it expects to complete this transfer and to close the east side of its Japanese Shizuoka facility by June of 2015.

"This transfer of production reinforces Corning's belief, which we previously communicated, that the annual synergies anticipated with the acquisition of CPM can reach approximately $100 million in 2015 and potentially increase in the future. A significant portion of these synergies is expected to come from the optimization of Corning's global manufacturing footprint, as in this transfer of Gorilla Glass production to CPM announced today," James P. Clappin, president, Corning Glass Technologies, said.

Senior leaders from Corning met with all of the company's Japan-based employees on March 6 to explain this decision and answer questions. Company representatives are in the process of reviewing the options available to employees in the company's Shizuoka facility and will work closely with them to address their concerns.

"Restructuring actions are the most painful actions we take," Clappin said, adding, "We will put voluntary workforce reduction measures into place and provide contractor replacement and transfer options in Japan. Corning will treat its Japan-based employees with dignity and respect, consistent with our values, throughout this difficult time."

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Tags: corning  gorilla glass  Japan  Korea 

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