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Defense cuts blamed for 113 layoffs at L-3 Warrior Systems in Londonderry

Union Leader Correspondent

May 01. 2014 8:28PM
A total of 113 workers were laid off at L-3 Warrior Systems (formerly Insight Technology) in Londonderry on Thursday. (APRIL GUILMET/Union Leader Correspondent)

LONDONDERRY — Just seven months after letting go 61 employees, Thursday marked another hefty cutback for L-3 Warrior Systems in Londonderry.

Company officials have confirmed that 113 employees — representing about 13 percent of the branch’s New Hampshire workforce — lost their jobs this week.

Company spokeswoman Jennifer Barton attributed the layoffs to the decreased demand “for certain military products,” noting that both salaried and hourly positions were affected.

“All of these employees are being offered severance packages and outplacement assistance,” Barton said. “It was a difficult decision that was made to ensure Insight’s (L-3 Warrior System’s) long-term success amid declining defense budgets.”

Company officials attributed last October’s layoff to “the completion of certain Department of Defense programs and decreased demand for certain products.”

The company, located at 9 Akira Way, now has 761 employees.

On Thursday afternoon, Lorna Colquhoun, communications and legislative director for the state Division of Economic Development, said the state doesn’t have a rapid response team scheduled to address the Londonderry layoffs.

“We’re not seeing this as indicative of any trend in defense-oriented jobs around the state,” she said. “But we’re ready to offer assistance to help the employees and the company if needed.”

At one time, L-3, which has facilities in nearly 20 states as well as numerous locations worldwide, had more than 1,000 workers in the Granite State.

Built in 1997 as the home of Insight Technology, the company was sold to New York-based L-3 Communications in early 2010 for an undisclosed price. At the time, town assessment listings confirmed the property was worth nearly $4 million.

L-3 Communications is composed of four different sectors: aerospace systems, electronics systems, communications systems and national security solutions, according to the company website. The Londonderry location specializes in the development and manufacturing of night vision and electro-optical equipment, including thermal-imaging systems used in the firefighting, law enforcement and military fields.

According to the Wall Street Journal, L-3 Communications Holdings, Inc. reported Thursday that its overall first-quarter earnings fell by nearly seven percent; the decline was attributed to weaker sales.

Over the last year, L-3 Communications Systems-West has laid off a total of 420 workers in Utah. In January, 150 were laid off in Waco, Texas.

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