Delco Remy International Inc. says it will lay off 860 employees, or 12% of its workforce, in an effort to restructure its manufacturing facilities in the U.S., the U.K. and Canada.

Roughly 800 of the jobs will be eliminated in the U.S. and Canada. The auto parts maker plans to take $22 million, or 84 cents per share, in after-tax charges for the fiscal fourth quarter, mainly from employee separation programs related to the realignment.

Delco Remy says the restructuring will save $20 million per year in operating costs, beginning in fiscal year 2001.

In other supplier news: Bridgestone Corp. says it will research the integration of module parts and suspension systems with two Japanese component makers, Akebono Brake Industry Co. Ltd. and Kayaba Industry Co. Ltd. Valeo SA and Ichikoh Industries sign a final agreement regarding a global lighting systems and equipment alliance announced in April. ArvinMeritor Inc. wins a multi-year contract to supply steer and drive axles, disc brakes and antilock braking systems to Blue Bird Corp., a manufacturer of school buses, commercial buses and motor coaches, beginning spring 2001. Mackie Automotive Systems opens a 495,000-sq.-ft. plant in Arlington, TX, replacing two former facilities that provided sequencing and subassemblies to the nearby General Motors Corp. assembly plant. The new expanded operation will add 125 jobs, boosting total employment at Mackie to 525. Delphi Automotive Systems opens a 124,000-sq.-ft. technical center in Krakow, Poland, that will employ more than 300 engineers, technicians, administrators, and support personnel. Motorola's Automotive Industrial and Electronics Group says it has won a contract with a major North American automaker to supply the body control module for a new sport/utility vehicle, due to launch in 2002. Motorola says lifetime revenue of the program is expected to be $17 million. Canadian electronics maker C-MAC Industries Inc. says it will buy Invotronics Mfg., a unit of Magna International Inc., to expand its presence in the automotive sector.

Ward's Supplier Index
7/27/'00 % Chg.
Prev. Week
% Chg.
Yr. to Date
Ward's Index 84.4 -2.7 -26.1
DaimlerChrysler 53.1 -5.0 -28.7
Ford 46.9 -1.1 -7.9
GM 57.9 -3.7 -19.1
S&P 500 1,449.62 -3.1 3.3
Note: This index is a weighted average with a 100-point base figured from 1/2/97. For details see Ward's Automotive Reports, June 12, '00, insert.
Source: Ward's.

The Ward's Supplier Index fell 2.7% for the week ending July 27, outperforming the 3.1% drop suffered by the Standard & Poor's 500. Of the 65 companies tracked, 47 lost ground during the week.