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Company spokeswoman Beth Kitteringham said the  jobs lost come from among the company’s more than 700 Charlotte-region employees. Celgard has plants in Charlotte and Concord, where it makes key components for electric vehicle batteries.
“Demand for (electric drive vehicles) has not increased as quickly as our customers and their customers originally projected,” said Kitteringham via email. She said the decision was taken to align staffing with business needs. “However, the long-term trend for the market remains positive.”
Celgard is a subsidiary of Charlotte-based high-tech manufacturer Polypore. In its most recent quarter, Polypore reported that net sales slumped 6.5 percent, to $177.6 million, and profits fell to $14.2 million. That’s down from $23.6 million in profits during the same quarter last year.
Sales of the company’s electric drive vehicle and electronics products fell to $43.5 million, down from $56 million in the same quarter last year. Operating income for the segment was down by more than 50 percent, falling to $10.5 million from $26.5 million a year ago. Lower production levels of electric drive vehicles were cited as the main cause.
Politicians have touted Celgard as an example of a successful clean energy company. Celgard received a $49 million grant from President Obama’s stimulus program, and he made a speech at the company in 2010.
Am I laughing here? Of course not. People will be losing their jobs, and close to home – both here in Charlotte and next door in Concord. But the failure of green biz stimulus “experiment” was predicted by many … and is coming to pass, to the tune of billions of dollars to the US taxpayer. This is further proof that government being in the “investment” business only benefits them, not you. As another example of that, let’s not forget that millions of our taxpayer dollars were awarded to green energy companies who had cozy relationships with the White House – including the failed Solyndra, for starters.
Move along here, nothing to see ….