Mercury Marine officials in Fond du Lac confirmed Wednesday that consolidation is one possible option as the company makes tough decisions during a downturn in the marine industry. Kevin Grodzki, Mercury's President of Marketing, Sales and Operations, says rumors over the past two months about consolidating operations at the Fond du Lac or Stillwater, Oklahoma facilities are true. He says it's too early to say if consolidating at one of the facilities will shut down operations for the other plant.
Grodzki says union costs will be a factor in the decision. Mercury's Fond du Lac facility has an employees union, while Stillwater's does not, thus employee concessions may need to be on the table.
"We are going to need to be competitive with some world class competitors in terms of wages and benefits," he says.
Mercury's Fond du Lac facility employs about 1,900 workers and the Stillwater facility around 400.
Grodzki says a decision could be made by the end of the summer. More about the financial downturn in the marine industry will be learned on July 30th when Mercury's parent company, Brunswick Corporation, releases its second quarter report.