PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) – After years of work and promises to invest $50 million and bring 170 high paying jobs to Bay County GKN Aerospace is shutting its doors and has laid off 60 employees.
“It’s very disappointing,” said Becca Hardin, the president of the Bay County Economic Development Alliance.
Hardin added that there were incentives connected to the agreement to bring the GKN facility to the area but that money was never paid out because GKN did not meet the performance requirements.
GKN has 18,000 employees in 50 locations and 15 countries. The company boasts that “All major aircraft and engine manufacturers rely on our advanced technologies.”
GKN officials released this statement on Tuesday to News 13:
“Over the past few months, we have been in discussion to agree the long-term manufacturing location of a major work package in the US. Following these commercial discussions, we have agreed that this work package will remain at its current GKN Aerospace facility, rather than moving to our Florida site as we had planned. We are unable to give further details, however without this work package, there is no realistic opportunity to sustain our Panama City site. We would like to thank our employees for their outstanding commitment and make clear that this unfortunate outcome is in no way a reflection on their efforts, which have been exemplary throughout. We will now begin a carefully managed wind-down of the facility over the coming months and we will work closely will our employees and all relevant stakeholders to ensure the process is done in the most appropriate way.”
This is a breaking story and we will have more information as it becomes available.