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Industrial valve maker Velan cutting 110 jobs because of oil and gas downturn

MONTREAL – Industrial valve manufacturer Velan Inc. is cutting about 110 jobs in North America because of the downturn in the oil and gas industry.

The Montreal-based company said some of the job cuts will be temporary layoffs while others will be eliminated entirely, partly through retirements.

Velan (TSX:VLN) said it is consolidating production at a plant adjacent to its head office to improve operational efficiencies. The transfer from a nearly 60-year-old facility in the same Montreal suburb will be phased in over nine to 12 months and cost about US$2.5 million.

About half of the affected employees are unionized. Three-quarters of the 110 jobs being eliminated are in Montreal, 20 per cent in Granby, Que., and the rest in Williston, Vt.

Velan’s global workforce will be reduced by about five per cent from 2,000.

“The layoffs were necessary as the result of an economic downturn that is impacting some of our important markets, especially the energy markets where the falling price of oil and the state of the global economy are creating uncertainty and affecting our bookings,” president Yves Leduc said in a release.

Founded in 1950, Velan is one of the world’s leading makers of industrial valves, with US$456 million in annual sales last year. It has 17 manufacturing plants in 10 countries.