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Gillette Closes South Auckland Toiletry Plant

As part of the global consolidation and realignment of its worldwide manufacturing operations, The Gillette Company today announced that it will be closing its toiletry manufacturing plant in South Auckland within the next six months.

The closure will result in the loss of 28 manufacturing, technical and support jobs. All affected employees will receive redundancy payments that exceed statutory requirements and that are comparable with settlement benefits offered by other leading employers.

The South Auckland plant, which opened in 1987, has been producing a range of aerosol and liquid toiletry products such as deodorants, shaving cream and hairspray for the New Zealand market, and for export to Australia and the Asian region. Contract suppliers in China, Thailand and Australia will now supply these markets with toiletry products.

Declining volumes from regional toiletry brands, due to the increased demand for global toiletry brands manufactured and imported from overseas, coupled with the economic downturn in Asia have made the long-term survival of the plant uneconomic.

The move to close the South Auckland toiletry plant is part of Gillette's consolidation and realignment of its global manufacturing operations that began in the fourth quarter of 1998 and will be implemented over a period of 18 months. These changes are necessary to enable Gillette to adapt more quickly to the changing global business environment and to use its resources more effectively.

This worldwide consolidation and realignment activity will result in the net reduction of approximately 4,700 of Gillette's global work force, or about 11 percent of the Company's 43,000 employees.

ENDS

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