Bombardier to cut 7,000 jobs worldwide

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WICHITA, Kan. — Bombardier Inc. said Wednesday it will reduce its global workforce by 7,000 people over the next two years.

The Montreal-based parent of Learjet said most of the cuts will be in Canada and Europe. But the action also will affect 220 people in Wichita, a Bombardier spokeswoman said, over the same two-year period.

Bombardier employs 1,850 people at its plant on the west side of Wichita Eisenhower National Airport.

The announcement of job cuts came as part of the plane and train maker’s year-end 2015 earnings, in which the company saw lower revenue last year, $18.2 billion, compared with $20.1 billion in 2014. Its adjusted net income for 2015 was $326 million, down by nearly half of the $648 million it reported in 2014.

The affected positions will be both production and non-production, and in the company’s train and plane units. Of the 7,000 positions to be cut, 2,000 of them will be contractors, Bombardier said.

Bombardier’s top executive said the job cuts are “difficult” but necessary for the company, which for the past several years has struggled with delays and rising costs on its new C Series airliner program. In the past year, the company has pushed back the entry into service of its Global 7000 business jet, canceled its Learjet 85 program that resulted in a $1.2 billion charge, and watched demand fall for its Global 5000 and 6000 business jets, especially in Russia, the Middle East and China.

“We’re taking this difficult decision to make Bombardier stronger,” Alain Bellemare, Bombardier president and CEO, said on a conference call Wednesday morning with financial analysts.