June 29, 2001 – Golden, CO – CoorsTek has laid off 960 employees this year, including 333 in Colorado. Most recently, the company cut 91 jobs at its Grand Junction office, said spokeswoman Terry Terens.
The maker of semiconductor equipment announced massive cuts in April but didn’t reveal the effect on its local workforce until this week. About half of the total workforce reductions occurred during the first quarter and the other half during the past three months.
CoorsTek, a spinoff of Coors Brewing Co., makes components used in computer chips. It also makes equipment for other high-tech industries.
Downturns in the telecommunications, electronics and semiconductor industries led to the layoffs, Terens said. She added that the company is looking at other cost-cutting measures, which will be announced during CoorsTek’s earnings call July 25.
CoorsTek currently employs 3,300 worldwide, including 1,500 in Colorado.
Susan Crossley, a senior analyst for Wells Fargo Van Kasper, said the job cuts were necessary because of the current conditions.
She said the downturn in the semiconductor industry is shaping up to be the worst in its history. As a result, almost all chipmakers, including industry giant Intel Corp. and LSI Logic Corp., have gone through similar workforce reductions.
CoorsTek also said it expects to have second-quarter revenue of $102 to $104 million, which is lower than analyst estimates. Crossley had projected revenue of $108 million.
“There’s nothing going on here that’s out of line with the market, in terms of the revenue decline,” Crossley said. “For the long haul, this is a well-run company. But the market is ugly right now.”
CoorsTek also said gross margins — the money a company makes from a product after production costs are subtracted — were expected to be 16% compared with an earlier forecast of 18%. The expected drop was attributed to the company’s shift toward the semiconductor assembly business and severance costs related to workforce reductions.