Job offers for RCR Energy staff
Following news this week of about 20 redundancies at Dannevirke’s RCR Energy, the company has confirmed they are continuing to receive phone calls and emails from local and regional companies who need qualified tradespeople, labourers and apprentices.
“Our guys are qualified, skilled and experienced and we have received offers for more roles than the number of people who are affected. The support has been truly amazing — there are advantages to living and working in rural New Zealand,” a company spokesperson said.
When news of the redundancies broke Tararua District mayor Tracey Collis said she was hopeful job offers would come in for the affected staff.
“While this is absolutely devastating news, the staff at RCR Energy have highly technical skills, but we’ve some wonderful engineering companies in our district, it’s what we are known for,” she said.
An RCR Energy spokesperson has said regardless of the name on the door and through good times and bad, the staff at Dannevirke have been looked after and as many staff as possible retained and consistently ensured of their incomes.
A statement from the company following news of the Dannevirke redundancies said, “The unfortunate truth is that a business which forms part of an internationally owned company will always be impacted by events at the parent company. RCR Tomlinson Australia have, in the recent past experienced cost overruns on solar projects which negatively impacted the company financially.
“During November, RCR Energy staff in Dannevirke and across the country were advised that the Australian parent company had requested a voluntary suspension from trading on the Australian Stock Exchange. This in itself is not an unusual event for large companies while they deal with financial uncertainty. An extension of the suspension was then announced at about the same time as a class action was filed against the company by its shareholders in Australia.
“On November 22, New Zealand staff were advised that the parent company, RCR Tomlinson Australia, had been placed under voluntary administration and administrators McGrath Nicol had taken over the running of business and would attempt to trade out of administration to get the company back in black to continue trading. RCR in New Zealand is a separate legal entity and staff were assured that it would keep operating for the foreseeable future — with a firm tightening of the belt things would be okay. The general manager for the New Zealand group visited the Dannevirke plant a couple of weeks ago and felt positive about the future of RCR in New Zealand.”
Unfortunately, further losses at the parent company had since come to light and the administrators advised it was likely the Australian business entities (about 30) would be sold off. An update from the New Zealand general manager on Monday highlighted the need to take action to cut costs within the New Zealand businesses and mentioned that job losses in New Zealand were becoming unavoidable if the company is to survive for the benefit of its larger majority of staff.
RCR Energy general manager Johnny Watson visited the Dannevirke plant on Tuesday to outline what the proposed job losses would entail in Dannevirke.
The company said following this announcement the human resources manager is now working with staff through the process of disestablishment of a number of roles at the plant. Watson has assured staff that management are doing everything in their power to keep the doors open and keep the majority of staff employed. There have been expressions of interest in the purchase of the various businesses under the RCR umbrella.
“It is unfortunate we are impacted by the situation of the parent company in Australia but I feel optimistic and we are ensuring we are able to continue supporting our loyal customers,” he said.
Over the years, residents of Dannevirke have noticed enormous structures on oversized trucks heading out of town. Most of these were manufactured by the guys at RCR manufacturing plant in Miller St and were shipped to locations throughout New Zealand and the world — boilers for Nestle in the United Kingdom and Australia, an auxiliary boiler for the Tarong North Power Station, and various plant for Fonterra.