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Nestle to close Lehigh Valley call center

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(Contributed) Nestle's corporate headquarters building in Arlington, Va.
(Contributed) Nestle's corporate headquarters building in Arlington, Va.

Nestle USA is planning to close a call center in Upper Macungie Township, a move estimated to affect 72 employees, according to a notice filed by the company.

The company is planning to transfer the call center’s work to a Nestle facility in Solon, Ohio, and made an initial announcement to employees in February 2018, Josh Morton, Nestle spokesperson, said in a statement.

The affected employees are from Nestle’s customer service organization – a team that operated inside the company’s distribution center at 555 Nestle Way in the Breinigsville section of Upper Macungie.

“This structure will allow us to better build relationships with our customers who are essential to our ability to compete in the marketplace,” Morton said. “Nestlé has been transforming our business to improve the way the company works so that we become more agile, efficient and innovative in an increasingly competitive marketplace.”

The distribution center, which is not closing, serves as a key hub for Nestlé in the region and supports distribution and logistics efforts for a number of Nestle businesses, including Nestlé USA, Nestlé Waters and Nestlé Purina, Morton said.

The lay-off notice was filed with the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry under the Worker Adjustment Retraining Notification, or WARN, Act.

The WARN Act requires employers to provide notice 60 days in advance of a business closing and mass layoff, according to the state website. The Nestle USA layoffs are slated to take effect between March 8 and March 22, according to the notice.

“Throughout the transition, we’ve worked to ensure that all impacted employees are appropriately supported,” Morton said.

For example, Nestle offered affected employees the opportunity to apply for roles in Solon. Since February, about 20 people have either left the organization for other opportunities or relocated, Morton said. The 52 employees remaining are still impacted.

Nestle has more than 210 employees at the distribution overall, he said. About 160 will continue to work there. Nestle employs more than 1,600 workers in Pennsylvania.

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Brian Pedersen

Brian Pedersen

Reporter Brian Pedersen covers construction, development, warehousing and real estate and keeps you up to date on the changing landscape of our community. He can be reached at brianp@lvb.com or 610-807-9619, ext. 4108. Follow him on Twitter @BrianLehigh.

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