Force Protection to cut 10 percent of work force

Posted September 30, 2009 3:10 p.m. EDT
Updated September 30, 2009 7:40 p.m. EDT

— Force Protection Inc. plans to reduce its work force by 10 percent, or about 120 workers, as it copes with a decline in orders for military vehicles over the past year.

The Ladson, S.C.-based defense contractor expects to record a third-quarter severance charge of $2 million.

Force Protection also says it is targeting annual savings of $40 million by realigning its business to focus on spares, vehicle upgrades and training.

The company anticipates completing changes in the first half of 2010.

Force Protection bought a former automotive textile plant near Roxboro two years ago, with plans to hire 270 people and build armored military vehicles there. Production there was slow to occur, with fewer than two dozen people working at the plant six months after the ribbon-cutting.