BRP shuts down Benton plant

2012-09-15T07:00:00Z 2013-09-17T09:37:20Z BRP shuts down Benton plantBY CALEB HALE, The Southern The Southern
September 15, 2012 7:00 am  • 

BENTON — A Benton boat-making plant is shutting down after its international owner announced Friday it’s pulling the plug on operations.

Bombardier Recreational Products Inc., which is based in Valcourt, Quebec, Canada, said sales are down globally in the marine industry, and the company will no longer make the type of sport boat that it has been building at the 400,000-square-foot facility just east of Interstate 57 since 1995.

BRP-produced products include Ski-Doo and Sea-Doo watercraft, as well as speedboats.

The plant employed 340 people, who were already on seasonal leave from production, said BRP spokesman Johanne Denault. Workers were scheduled to report to work Monday. A company statement said all workers not returning would “receive a good transition package.”

“This is a difficult but necessary decision for BRP,” company President and CEO José Boisjoli said in a statement. “We worked hard to grow our sport boat business through a serious sales decline that began in 2007. But now, we must focus our research and development resources and capital investments in areas of our business that offer greater growth potential.”

BRP tried unsuccessfully to sell its sport boat production operation.

Internationally, BRP employs more than 6,000 employees, with facilities in the U.S., Mexico and Finland, among others.

Local factory worker numbers fluctuated from season to season, but during its roughly 17 years of operation in Benton, the plant has employed as many as 500 people at one time.

caleb.hale@thesouthern.com

618-351-5090

Copyright 2015 The Southern. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(6) Comments

  1. OLD JOE
    Report Abuse
    OLD JOE - September 20, 2012 12:28 pm
    MickeeD, My brother, brother n law is a higher up at the Benton plant. He told me the conclusion was, the boat drivers was just playing to hard and not paying attention.

    I hate to see the Benton plant go down. I know a lot of good people that work their. In our area BRP is one of the best places to work at an earn a decent wage and benefits. The Canadian employers took really good care of the american workers!

    The Benton plant only worked 6-9 months a year, depending how many sales they had. During the shut down, and when the employees was drawing unenjoyment. BRP would put another $300 a month on a debit card for their employees so they wouldn't go out and find another job.
  2. MickeeD
    Report Abuse
    MickeeD - September 20, 2012 11:34 am
    I never did hear about the investigation regarding the BRP boat crash which killed two people a few months ago. This is obviously another bad hit for BRP's public relations.
  3. daver852
    Report Abuse
    daver852 - September 20, 2012 10:49 am
    Don't panic! President Obama has already created 4.5 million jobs! When he's reelected, he'll creat 4.5 million more! Why, we'll have so many jobs we'll probably have to grant amnesty to 20 million illegal Mexicans just to fill them. Prosperity is right around the corner.
  4. Rod D
    Report Abuse
    Rod D - September 18, 2012 11:47 pm
    OlDizzzzzy. .Bain partnered 50/50 with the Bombardier family, in August of 03, almost 4 years after our next President departed from Bain. BRP is still a Canadian company,

    But, I suppose you think the company should continue to let the division bleed them dry, so the entire corporation can go bankrupt.
  5. SI Resident
    Report Abuse
    SI Resident - September 18, 2012 11:36 pm
    Just what Southern Illinois needs, more job losses.
  6. OlDiz
    Report Abuse
    OlDiz - September 15, 2012 11:19 am
    In item of note that was included in the Corporate press release but omitted above:

    " Bombardier Inc. unit was bought out in 2003 by a consortium led by U.S. private equity fund Bain Capital. "

    Bain Capital - Good for America.
Add Comment
You must Login to comment.

Click here to get an account it's free and quick

Anti-strike measure approved in House

SPRINGFIELD — Democrats in the Illinois House pushed through a plan Friday that could stop a lockout or a strike by the state's largest employ… New

24 minutes ago Related (0)

Summer Reading Programs

Anne West Lindsey District Library: 600 N. Division St., Carterville. Summer Reading registration will be June 1 through 6 during regular libr… New

24 minutes ago(0)
Marion police seeking runaway teen

Marion police seeking runaway teen

Marion Police Department is seeking help in searching for a reported runaway. 

8 hours ago(0)
Rauner wants compromise by Sunday

Rauner wants compromise by Sunday

SPRINGFIELD — Hoping to salvage some of his business-friendly agenda, Gov. Bruce Rauner said he wants to strike a deal with Democrats on issue… Updated: 11:26 pm

8 hours ago Photos

Photos

Related (0)

1st positive test for West Nile virus in Illinois in 2015

SPRINGFIELD — The state Department of Public Health reported the first positive test for West Nile virus this year has been reported in a batc…

8 hours ago(0)

Rauner: No special session if deadline for budget missed

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Gov. Bruce Rauner says he will not call lawmakers back into session if there's no agreement on a budget by Sunday.

11 hours ago(0)
'Clean energy' bills take back seat to Illinois budget

'Clean energy' bills take back seat to Illinois budget

SPRINGFIELD — Measures advertised as promoting "clean energy" in Illinois — including a plan pushed by power-producing giant Exelon Corp. — ha… Updated: 10:03 pm

11 hours ago Photos

Photos

Related (0)

Rauner, leaders negotiating, but no budget deal this session

SPRINGFIELD — Illinois legislative leaders say they're still open to negotiating with Gov. Bruce Rauner over the 2016 budget and Rauner's pro-…

11 hours ago Related (0)

Updated: SIUE says worker killed repaving campus road

EDWARDSVILLE — A construction worker killed while repaving a road on the campus of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville has been identifi…

12 hours ago Related (0)

Carbondale man sentenced to eight years for heroin distribution

A Carbondale man was sentenced Tuesday in Jackson County court to eight years in prison for distributing heroin, according to a release from t… Updated: 10:03 pm

13 hours ago Related (0)
Activate subscription button gif
Follow the Southern Illinoisan

Pinboard