Processing Magazine

W.R. Grace loses $40 million, sheds jobs

April 27, 2009
Global chemicals maker W.R. Grace & Co. swung to a nearly $40 million loss for the first three months of the year, a drop the company attributed in part to slower sales and charges involved with its ongoing restructuring efforts, reported by the Baltimore Business Journal. For the quarter, Grace reported a loss of $39 million, or 54 cents per share, down from earnings of nearly $18 million, or 24 cents per share, a year earlier. Company CEO Fred Festa said the losses also reflect improvements in the company’s operations that will pay off in the future. Festa said in a statement, that W.R. Grace would implement undisclosed number of layoffs company-wide, which would result in pre-tax charges of about $19 million related to those cuts and other restructuring operations. The company has about 6,300 employers worldwide, with about 1,000 in Maryland. Company officials declined to discuss how many workers were laid off under the restructuring, or where, but said they were global in scope. The company expects to save about $22 million in operating costs due to those changes this year and more than $40 million in 2010. Sales for the first quarter fell 10.2 percent to about $682 million. The largest losses came from Europe, where sales fell nearly 24 percent. The company has operated under Chapter 11 since April 2001. It is seeking up to $1 billion to finance its emerge from bankruptcy protection and hopes to do so by the end of 2009.