Glen Dimplex announces plans to close Portadown site over next two years

Glen Dimplex is planning to close its Portadown site as part of a reorganisation of its all-Ireland operations – putting an estimated 200 jobs at risk.
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Employeers of the heating and ventilation manufacturer were told on Thursday of proposals to reduce the number of the company’s all-Ireland sites from five to three.

Glen Dimplex plans to transfer its panel and storage heating manufacturing from sites in Newry and Portadown to its existing manufacturing site in Lithuania.

Under this proposal, the Portadown site will close, "most likely in 2025”, while significant investment is planned for Newry.

Fergal Leamy, Glen Dimplex Group CEO. Picture: Glen DimplexFergal Leamy, Glen Dimplex Group CEO. Picture: Glen Dimplex
Fergal Leamy, Glen Dimplex Group CEO. Picture: Glen Dimplex

The company says some of the Portadown staff may redeploy to the Newry operation.

It is planned that around €25m will be invested in the Newry site which will be repurposed into a centre of excellence for the manufacture of zero carbon, renewable heating solutions including heat pumps.

A Glen Dimplex spokesperson confirmed that although overall employment will increase by more tan 200 roles by 2029, there will be job losses.

"Workforce composition will change as a result of retraining, redeployment, redundancies and new hires. Subject to the outcome of a staff consultation process, up to 300 net redundancies are expected between late 2024 and 2026.

"Employees at all Glen Dimplex sites were briefed today (Thursday, February 8) about the proposed reorganisation and investment programme that will be implemented on a phased basis from late 2024 through 2026.

"There will be no redundancies as part of the planned reorganisation of operations for at least six months. Management will work with employee representatives, union groups and training agencies to ensure the planned transitions are as seamless as possible, and that appropriate outplacement and training supports are provided.”

The company said that following a strategic review of its island-wide operations, staff had been briefed on plans to invest €50m to re-orientate its manufacturing operations here and in continental Europe to meet the growing demand for increasingly sustainable and smart heating and ventilation solutions for homes and businesses.

"The proposals will see €40m being invested in manufacturing, R&D activity and new sales and distribution facilities on the island of Ireland, where total employment is expected to increase by 20 per cent to over 1,000 staff within five years.

"Today Glen Dimplex employs over 8,000 people globally. A €10m investment is planned in Lithuania to leverage existing manufacturing capacity and become a centre of excellence for storage heating and panel heaters.

"The group’s footprint on the island will be consolidated from five sites to three flagship hubs as it transitions to higher value manufacturing, to become a centre of excellence and R&D hub for zero carbon heating and ventilation technologies in the group.”

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Glen Dimplex Portadown closure 'a huge blow' for employees and economy

Kieran Donoghue, chief executive of economic development agency Invest NI, said: “The news of Glen Dimplex‘s plans to wind down its facility in Portadown over the next two years will be deeply upsetting for staff.

"We will work with the company and those affected to identify alternative employment opportunities and to pursue reskilling opportunities as appropriate.

“We will also work closely with the Department for the Economy and the Department for Communities to support the employees impacted by this decision.

“The company has been clear that the decision to consolidate its operations in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland is for commercial reasons. This restructuring will support its ultimate growth plans and potentially see the firm expand its business in Northern Ireland out of its second site in Newry. We will continue to work with the company to capture opportunities for further investment and job creation at this facility.”