US firm Molex will shut its Shannon facility, impacting up to 500 jobs

The company has operated in Co Clare almost 50 years.

By Laura Roddy Reporter, Fora

ELECTRICAL COMPONENT COMPANY Molex is closing its Irish operations in Shannon, Co Clare in a move that will result in the loss of up to 500 jobs. 

In an announcement today, the company said after a review of the product lines manufactured at the facility, it has decided to close the plant by the end of next year.

It said “the majority of products made at the Shannon facility have insufficient financial returns and growth potential”.

“Therefore, these products will either be exited or divested, with any remaining products transferred to other Molex facilities,” it said. 

The US multinational firm makes a variety of electronic components across several industries including the medical, automotive and consumer electronics sectors.

It said announcing its intention to close the facility “is very difficult due to the impact on our employees, and the deep ties Molex has with the region and the people”. 

The closure of the Shannon facility is subject to an employee consultation process and it is expected to take place in a series of phases, starting in early 2020. 

Molex has operated in Co Clare since 1971. 

Minister for Business Heather Humphreys said through a statement that she is “bitterly disappointed” by the news. 

“I fully appreciate how important large-scale employers like this are to regional areas, which makes this company closure all the more difficult,” she said.

When asked by Fora if the US-China trade war played a role in the decision to shut the factory, a spokesman for Molex replied “the tariff scenario you mention is not a factor”.

Get our Daily Briefing with the morning’s most important headlines for innovative Irish businesses.