Quad to Close Its Midland, Mich., Publication Printing Plant, Impacting 300 Workers
The former Pendell Printing, located in Midland, Mich., has survived several ownership changes throughout its history. But, unfortunately for the approximately 300 employees who work there, parent company Quad announced on July 7 that the nearly 220,000-sq.-ft. special interest publication printing operation will be closed permanently on or about Sept. 10, 2019. Work from the Midland facility will be shifted to other Quad locations.
Quad said it will proactively assist Midland employees in finding new jobs, including financial relocation incentives for those positions available at other Quad locations throughout the country. The remaining Midland plant workers will receive a separation package that includes severance pay, continuation of health care benefits, and career transition assistance through a career counseling company, according to Quad officials. A company career fair is also planned for the week of July 22.
In a statement released to employees and the local media, Quad indicated that "the decision is part of the company’s ongoing strategy to streamline operations and create efficiencies across its U.S. manufacturing platform and help print remain an economically feasible alternative to digital channels.
"The decision in no way reflects the quality and performance of employees in the plant, all of whom have worked hard to make the plant succeed," the statement continued. "Given the continued migration of advertising dollars to digital channels, Quad and the printing industry must continue to take steps to align declining volume with capacity."
Quad will continue to have a presence in the Midland, Mich., community through its QuadMed subsidiary, which manages an onsite primary care facility at Dow. However, the company says it intends to sell the Midland printing plant.
Pendell Played Key Role in Quebecor US Expansion
Back in 1985, Pendell Printing was acquired by Montreal-based Quebecor Printing, marking Quebecor's first foray into the U.S. market. That was followed by Quebecor's acquisition of Bell Canada's printing plants in 1988, and then Maxwell Graphics in 1990.
In 1999, Quebecor Printing merged with World Color in a (U.S.)$2.7 billion transaction to create Quebecor World, which was heralded back then as the largest acquisition ever made in the printing industry. Quebecor Printing paid approximately $840 million in cash, representing $35.69 per share, and also assumed World Color's approximately $1.3 billion debt.
After hitting hard times due to the rise of digital media, Quebecor World (USA) filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January 2008. RR Donnelley made an unsuccessful bid to buy the company — which had changed its name back to Worldcolor Press — in May 2009 as it emerged from creditor protection. Ultimately, Sussex, Wis.-based Quad acquired Worldcolor — which included the Midland, Mich., printing plant — in July 2010.
Today, Quad operates 57 plants worldwide and employs more than 20,000 employees. The majority of its operations are in the U.S., where it operates 49 plants (including Midland) and employs approximately 18,000 people.