Sony DADC cutting staff

Sony DADC in Terre Haute, shown here in a January 2018 Tribune-Star photo.

Sony DADC is moving its gaming and disc manufacturing capacity out of Terre Haute to Salzburg, Austria, cutting about 100 employees, said Lisa Gephardt, senior director of corporate communications for Sony Corp. of America.

The workforce reduction likely will be in March.

The company plans to retain about 150 employees.

“Due to a continuous move to digital in the home entertainment market, Sony DADC announced [it will] consolidate all of its disc replication operations into one site and as such the disc manufacturing services based in the U.S. Terre Haute site will cease by mid 2022,” Gephardt said.

“… Every effort will be made to support the employees during this time. Distribution, manufacturing assembly, client services and graphic studio services will remain in operation in the Terre Haute site,” Gephardt said.

“Disc manufacturing will continue to take place at Sony DADC’s main Central European Manufacturing hub in Salzburg, Austria. The disc manufacturing capacity ... in Terre Haute will be integrated into the facility in Austria. This setup allows Sony DADC to remain a strong and reliable partner as end-to-end service provider for the entertainment industry and beyond,” Gephardt wrote.

Sony has fewer than 300 employees in Terre Haute after cutting its workforce in half in 2018, when it cut 375 employees from its facility at 1800 Fruitridge Ave. That reduction was made after Sony outsourced its music and video manufacturing.

The newly effected workers will not be offered other positions, as Terre Haute was the last production facility in the United States, Gephardt said.

“The workers will get a severance package,” she said in a telephone interview.

The Terre Haute facility will now become an assembly and distribution facility for Sony.

“We are not becoming a distribution center for an outside company,” Gephardt said. “We will need about 150 employees for the distribution side. Assembly will be done in Terre Haute, and distribution” will be done in Terre Haute, she said.

The move to Salzburg is a consolidation back to a large Sony DADC facility. That facility will now produce all master and replication works, and it will do the printing of discs, especially for gaming systems, Gephardt said.

Steve Witt, president of the Terre Haute Economic Development Corp., said Sony DADC has been a long corporate stable in the city.

“Well, first of all, Sony Corporation is a great company. Whenever I think of Sony DADC in our community, I’m reminded of Mayor Pete Chalos. Mayor Chalos was in office when Sony first came to Terre Haute and was a true champion of the company in its early years here. As a community, we are grateful for Sony DADC’s near 40-year presence in Terre Haute and the thousands of jobs that the company has created over the past several decades,” Witt said.

“The total investment that Sony DADC has made in our community over the years is multiple billions of dollars,” he said, including corporate, income and property taxes as well as facility investment.

“As a community, we continue to push for new employment opportunities,” Witt said. “Terre Haute and Vigo County is currently in the midst of new manufacturing project activity totaling in excess of one-half billion dollars of new investment. The number of new jobs being created by these new projects is in excess of 800.

“Plus, it seems that virtually every employer in town has job openings available. So, while we are certainly sad to hear of Sony DADC’s latest manufacturing downsizing, due to factors beyond anyone’s control, we can take comfort in the fact that our community continues to be a great place for new manufacturing investment, as evidenced by the many manufacturing companies currently expending significant capital in Terre Haute and Vigo County.”

Reporter Howard Greninger can be reached 812-231-4204 or howard.greninger@tribstar.com. Follow on Twitter@TribStarHoward.

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