FRANKFURT, July 17 (Reuters) - German steel group ThyssenKrupp presented a restructuring plan on Thursday for stainless steel plant Acciai Speciali Terni that entailed cutting about 550 jobs and 100 million euros ($135 million) in annual costs.
The Italian plant has been posting losses for several years, which ThyssenKrupp has blamed on a difficult market environment as well as structural problems.
ThyssenKrupp had to take back Terni from Outokumpu earlier this year as the Finnish company struggled to refinance.
ThyssenKrupp said it wanted the plant to focus on cold-rolled products, which meant it would close one furnace by the end of its 2015/16 fiscal year.
About 20 percent of Terni’s workforce would be cut under the plan, which ThyssenKrupp has to negotiate with unions and the Italian government.
Italy’s industrial capacity has been severely reduced during the financial crisis, and the government is keen to ensure that it does not lose another major manufacturer.
The cost-cutting programme, which aims to return Terni to sustainable profitability, is to run for about five years, a person familiar with the negotiations said.
Terni, which employs about 2,600 staff, posted sales of 1.9 billion euros in 2013.
$1 = 0.7393 Euros Reporting by Kirsti Knolle; Editing by Maria Sheahan and Jane Baird