Downsizing and facility location: plant closures in multiplant manufacturing firms

J.D. Kirkham (Sheffield Business School, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK)
S.M. Richbell (Sheffield University Management School, Sheffield, UK)
H.D. Watts (Department of Geography, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK)

Management Decision

ISSN: 0025-1747

Publication date: 1 April 1998


Downsizing sometimes involves the shutdown of manufacturing capacity by multiplant firms. The paper focuses on the selection of a site for shutdown by firms operating two or more sites manufacturing a similar product. Survey evidence from managers involved suggests such decisions are not always based on financial information. Open discussions with managers responsible for selecting sites for closure, suggest the key factors used in selecting a plant for closure are small size, a limited range of activities on site, site difficulties of access of expansion, labour problems, old age in capital equipment (both machinery and buildings) and a long distance from head office.



Kirkham, J., Richbell, S. and Watts, H. (1998), "Downsizing and facility location: plant closures in multiplant manufacturing firms", Management Decision, Vol. 36 No. 3, pp. 189-197.

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Copyright © 1998, MCB UP Limited

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