Up to 95 jobs could be affected within the company’s Wrightbus and Customcare operating divisions in Ballymena.
According to Mark Nodder OBE, Wrights Group chairman, the decision was taken “with a heavy heart”, but is essential if the business is to remain competitive.
Like the rest of the industry, he said, Wrightbus is facing “very difficult conditions” in the domestic market, with shrinking order books: “In order that the business remains competitive in the long term, it is vital that we promptly take appropriate steps to align our production capacity to projected demand in the foreseeable future.”
The news comes on the back of latest data from the Society of Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), which shows bus and coach registrations for the final quarter of 2017 fell by almost 16%, to 1,688 units. This means the sector saw a fall in every quarter last year, with the overall 2017 result being a double-digit decline of almost 13%.
Double-deck demand saw the biggest fall across the year, declining by 17% with 1,598 units registered. Single-decks and minibuses also suffered, down by 8% and 13% respectively.