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Yamaha Closes Two U.S. Manufacturing Facilities

Yamaha Corp. of America will close two U.S. manufacturing facilities and consolidate its musical instrument manufacturing operations in Asia. The closures are part of a long-term plan to enhance Yamaha’s competitive position in the global musical products market.

The facilities, Yamaha Music Manufacturing in Thomaston, Ga., and Yamaha Musical Products in Grand Rapids, Mich., will cease operations March 30 and April 27, respectively. These factories currently manufacture Yamaha’s acoustic pianos, professional audio speakers, and woodwind, brasswind and percussion musical instruments. The closings will affect approximately 380 employees in the two locations. The company will provide the employees with a comprehensive separation package.

“We must take this action in light of market realities and new, fierce international competition,” said Yoshihiro Doi, president of Yamaha America. “I am proud of our people and their achievements, and I deeply appreciate their commitment and loyalty to Yamaha. I am equally grateful for the support of the local communities in which these plants have thrived for a combined 60 years of commitment here in the United States.”

Yamaha will move its manufacturing operations to existing company-owned overseas facilities, but it remains committed to marketing in the United States and continuing its level of service support for the products that will now be imported here.

Also part of this restructuring, Yamaha Exporting will be integrated into an exporting department of Yamaha’s Operations Division effective April 1, and the Band & Orchestral Custom Shop and parts will be relocated to Yamaha America headquarters, in Buena Park, Calif. Finished goods and warranty services from the two plants will be relocated to other locations to be disclosed at a later date.

The closures, Doi said, are being made with extreme reluctance, but are necessary to ensure Yamaha’s and its retailers’ competitiveness and continued growth in the musical products marketplace, given the emergence of “new, aggressive global competition, notably from manufacturers based in China.”