September 2, 2020
To all Kymera International Employees,
We experienced such unprecedented times in the past seven months it is hard to remember what is was like pre-Covid- 19. The statistics of cases and deaths are disheartening but it does appear to be heading in the right direction.
While the U.S. is still the “leader” in cases and deaths it does seem to be on a positive trend downward, whereas European countries and Australia have had an increase in cases. This is not overly surprising as Europe returns from summer holidays where many people could have been exposed and Australians may have gotten a little too comfortable with the situation and let their guard down with respect to hygiene and social distancing. Despite the U.S. improving, as children return to school and the weather cools there are fears of another wave of cases.
So, what does this all mean to our day-to-day lives and our business? The U.S. Kymera businesses are slowly recovering from the drastic drop in demand in automotive and industrial end markets. SCM’s volumes are improving at a stronger rate compared to ACuPowder while Reading Alloys’ aerospace market is still extremely soft and is not expected to see an uptick in demand for several months.
The aluminum powder business has been relatively stable but summer holidays, an increase in COVID-19 cases and an unstable economy has affected Mepura, NFK and BAI. Also, the recent hurricane in Texas and Louisiana will have a short-term effect on EGA and EGoA.
EGG is still struggling to make budget as its automotive customers continue to be weak; however, Innobraze, who had a dramatic drop in demand in prior months seems to have stabilized its business. SCM Suzhou’s business is stable as China’s economy was affected before the rest of the world and has since improved.
The governments in our operating countries have helped ease the financial burden on employees and to Kymera by offering assistance in terms of short-time work in Europe, additional unemployment benefits in the U.S. and the job- keeper program in Australia.
We will continue to fight and do our best to avoid layoffs. We will evaluate each plant on an individual basis and when business improves, those affected by salary reductions will see a return to pre-COVID-19 wages, with the understanding that this could revert back to reductions should business conditions change. And so, feel free to talk with human resources and/or your manager to see how this affects you.
Please remember that furloughs, layoffs, salary reductions and not filling job vacancies is not something we enjoy doing but are necessary steps to maintain the health of our business as our overall business is down vs. budget and last year by double digit percentages. However, according to industry statistics we are outperforming our peers and competitors and so when we emerge from this pandemic, we will be in a strong position to fuel growth. We will continue to invest in equipment for maintenance/upgrades and new projects that fit in with our strategic goals.
In the near future we are going to be sharing with all of you our new Vision Statement, Strategy and Objectives that will help grow our business significantly and address important issues such as the environment and social issues. I am excited about the current business opportunities we have and the plans we have for the future. Rest assured you are part of an incredible team that has a bright future and so let’s continue to work together through this difficult global time and we will emerge even stronger than we were before this pandemic.
Please remember to be safe and stay healthy
Barton White – CEO
ACuPowder | ECKA Granules | Innobraze | SCM Metal Products