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Catalytic converter maker Johnson Matthey cuts 2,500 jobs and halves dividend

Time 11 months ago

Manufacturing firm Johnson Matthey has said it is cutting 2,500 jobs from its workforce and plans to halve its dividend to shareholders.

The London-based business specialises in producing catalytic converters for cars but has taken a hit from the coronavirus pandemic.

Johnson Matthey reported a 27 per cent slump in operating profits to £388m in the year to March, after taking a £60m hit from the impact of Covid-19.

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The redundancies will remove more than a sixth of its workforce over the next three years.

Johnson Matthey also revealed it plans to halve its dividend to shareholders.

The news comes as the industry is digesting figures showing UK car manufacturing plummeted by 99 per cent in April, according to the SMMT.

Robert MacLeod, chief executive of the business, said the company made ‘good progress’ before the pandemic but now needs to be ‘even more efficient’ amid challenging market conditions.

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MacLeod added: ‘Covid-19 has brought unprecedented challenges to the world and Johnson Matthey.

‘During this pandemic, we have tried to balance the needs of all of our stakeholders but our first priority remains the health and safety of our people, customers, suppliers and communities where we operate.

‘I would like to say a heartfelt thank you to all of our employees for their dedication and efforts over the past few months.’

Johnson Matthey said it aims to secure £80m in annual savings from its cost reduction plans by 2023.

James Batchelor

James – or Batch as he’s known – started at Car Dealer in 2010, first as the work experience boy, eventually becoming editor in 2013. He worked for Auto Express as editor-at-large and was the face of Carbuyer’s YouTube reviews. In 2020, he went freelance and now writes for a number of national titles and contributes regularly to Car Dealer.

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