Up to 90 jobs could be lost following a drop in orders at a Leicester company that makes airline parts.
SPS Technologies has started consulting with staff and union members about a 15 per cent cut in the 580-strong workforce at its site in Barkby Road, Thurmaston.
It is the second time in two-and-a-half years that significant cuts in the workforce have been made.
The business makes bolts, pins, screws and nuts designed to work under high-stress conditions in aircraft engines and airframes.
Management say they hope to keep job losses to a minimum as they look for new orders, but staff are said to be despondent.
According to Companies House, latest accounts for the year to March 2016 showed sales were slightly down at £72.3 million – and a pre-tax loss of £447,000 compared to a profit of £6.5 million a year earlier.
In 2014 pre-tax profits had been almost £22 million.
(Image: Beth Walsh)
The accounts said the drop in profits was due to issues such as higher production costs and restructuring.
Most orders are split between the UK and Europe, with about 14 per cent going to the US.
The business is owned by jet engine component manufacturer Precision Castparts Corp, which has its headquarters in Portland, Oregon, on the west coast of America.
One worried worker, who asked not to be named, said: “They told all the staff and the union that 90 jobs were threatened.
“I think it’s happening because the amount of work has gone down – they deal with Airbus mainly.
“Orders have gone down, which is something we have noticed on the shop floor over the last few years.
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“For instance, there had been a Friday, Saturday and Sunday weekend shift, but that was dropped on January 1.
“They’ve said these job losses will be made right across the staff. The last time there were job losses was 2015.
“I’ve worked here for years and everyone is feeling down.
“It’s a huge number of people. For the next two weeks they have invited anyone who wants to to volunteer for redundancy.
“I’m going to wait and see what happens and hopefully keep my job.”
In a statement, David Dugan, director of corporate communications for Precision Castparts Corp, said: “SPS Technologies is making staffing adjustments to react to a sustained reduction in the operation’s order book.
“The business announced to its workforce it will be beginning the consultation process with the trade union with the aim of minimising job losses.
“The business approximates up to 90 of its 580 total employees will be affected, and all those impacted will be offered support and guidance.
“Whilst an unfortunate necessity in the near term, the company is continuing to aggressively pursue new business opportunities.”