UK

Chemicals giant Johnson Matthey reveals plan to cut 600 more jobs

Chemicals manufacturer Johnson Matthey is planning to cut about 600 jobs (Alamy/PA)
Chemicals manufacturer Johnson Matthey is planning to cut about 600 jobs (Alamy/PA) Chemicals manufacturer Johnson Matthey is planning to cut about 600 jobs (Alamy/PA)

Chemicals manufacturer Johnson Matthey is planning to cut about 600 jobs as efforts to slash costs and reshape the business intensify.

It also revealed plans to cut up to 30% of its management team.

The London-based, global company, which makes catalytic converters for vehicles, said it wants to focus on being a global energy transition company.

The 600 affected roles will be in its support functions, as it moves to outsource more work.

The latest round of job-cuts add to the reduction of 900 roles after the company confirmed plans to close four manufacturing sites, including three overseas which were shut this year.

About 12,600 people were employed by the group in more than 30 countries around the world, as of March this year.

A spokesman for the company said: “Johnson Matthey is transitioning to being a global energy transition company focussed on our core precious metals and catalysing technologies, and we are rightsizing the supporting functional organisation with a reduction of around 600 people as we are outsourcing business processes.

“We are also investing significantly in new technologies and hiring more talent in engineering and commercial roles.”

The company also said it will reduce between 25% and 30% of senior management roles to “ensure the organisation is not top-heavy”.

The business said it is on track to have made more than £150 million in yearly cost savings by the early part of 2025.

The sweeping cost-cutting measures come amid major restructuring aimed at boosting the business’s performance.

Earlier this year, the London-listed company fell off the FTSE 100 – the UK’s top stock market – and instead joined the FTSE 250 after its share price plunged.

Liam Condon, Johnson Matthey’s chief executive officer, said: “We are executing on our transformation at pace to simplify the business and drive improved performance.

“Across the group, we continue to upskill our commercial capabilities and our transformation programme is creating a more streamlined organisation and unlocking significant cost savings.”

Meanwhile, the group was impacted by lower precious metal prices in the latest half-year.

Pre-tax profits more than halved to £82 million in the six months to September, from £188 million the prior year.

If precious metal prices remain at their current level for the rest of the financial year, Johnson Matthey said it could sustain an £80 million hit to its full-year performance compared with the previous year.

But the business said it is expecting its operating profit to grow by about 8% to 9% over the full year, higher than previous guidance.

Its share price was up by about 5% on Wednesday morning.