Voith GmbH, a German maker of machines for the paper, energy and car industries, will cut 710 jobs as the success of tablet computers such as the iPad prompts an “irreversible” drop in demand for printed paper.
Voith will eliminate the positions at sites in Germany and Austria as it reviews factories where it makes its largest machines to print paper, the company said in a statement today. It plans to combine resources at German-speaking sites to adapt to the “new market situation,” it said.
The rise of media distribution through smartphones and tablet computers has led to falling demand for printed magazines and newspapers, and Voith said it anticipates a “clear cooling” of the market for graphic paper machines. Business has also shifted to Asia, where demand is greater for packaging machines and where competition is fiercer, reducing the need for equipment made in Europe, Voith said.
Voith, based in Heidenheim, said it’s trying to avoid laying off workers, and will seek to provide employees with other jobs. While the market for graphic paper is encountering an “irreversible decline,” demand for tissue paper and packaging is increasing, Voith said.
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