CORONAVIRUS

More furloughs could be coming for Collins Aerospace

Parent Raytheon Technologies Corp. cites downturn due to coronavirus

Collins Aerospace in Cedar Rapids. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
Collins Aerospace in Cedar Rapids. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

Citing a worldwide downturn in part due to the COVID-19 pandemic, officials of Raytheon Technologies Corp., parent company of Collins Aerospace, Cedar Rapids’ largest employer, said more furloughs could be on the way — without citing any specific numbers as to how many employees would be affected.

As part of that move, the Waltham, Mass.-based company said in a Thursday earnings conference call for investors it would cut $2 billion in costs in its commercial aerospace sector.

Collins Aerospace announced a temporary pay cut for salaried employees and furloughs for hourly employees in mid-April.

Pam Tvrdy-Cleary, Collins Aerospace senior director for external communications, on Monday said the Cedar Rapids-based avionics company had no new furloughs to announce.

In the Thursday call, Raytheon officials said more employees would be temporarily furloughed, a hiring freeze kept in place and some workers moved from commercial aerospace to defense work.

“I expect there will be further reductions ...,” CEO Greg Hayes said in the call, but provided no details. “We’re trying to be judicious ... (and to) keep as many jobs as we can.”

He added that, “There’s a lot of pain to come yet, a lot of tough decisions ahead of us.”

Raytheon posted a loss of $83 million for its first quarter.

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Chief Financial Officer Anthony “Toby” O’Brien said the company expected single-digit growth in defense work for Collins Aerospace for the coming quarter, with operating profit to “break even.”

“There are more unknowns than knowns,” O’Brien said of the immediate future of the aviation industry.

Comments: (319) 398-8307; michaelchevy.castranova@thegazette.com

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