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back to article Scottish ex-Moto chip factory to close

Chip maker Freescale will close its Scottish plant with the loss of hundreds of jobs, after failing to find a buyer for the facility. About 750 highly-skilled manufacturing jobs will be axed at the East Kilbride site, along with up to 100 support roles. The 25-acre site was opened by Motorola in 1969. Austin, Texas- …

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Coat

Technician Ted

Wonder what he'll do now?

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Anonymous Coward

haemorrhaging cash?

According to their year-end financial reports, Freescale has continuously increased their cash on hand year after year and has been making all of its debt payments. There have been a few bad articles written about Freescale's financial performance, but those articles were blatantly wrong.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: haemorrhaging cash?

In the three months to March 28 2008 Freescale made a net loss of $245m. In the three months to December 31 2007 it made a net loss of $525m.

http://media.corporate-ir.net/media_files/irol/17/175261/fsl_q108_er_with_tables.pdf

Background here: http://www.forbes.com/technology/2008/04/21/freescale-semiconductors-earnings-tech-enter-cx_bc_0421freescale.html

- Chris Williams

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Anonymous Coward

Re: haemorrhaging cash?

Their most recent quarterly earnings statement says:

Cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments were $1.25 billion on March 28, 2008, compared to $751 million at the fourth quarter ending December 31, 2007.

Which means that even though there was a net loss of value (company value, not money) according to the tricky accounting rules, the company increased its cash flow. Since the comment was about hemorrhaging cash I thought that stating its cash performance was more relevant than its "net worth".

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Silver badge

Highly-Skilled Manufacturing Jobs

What? What the hell does that mean? If they need highly skilled people on the line that right there explains why they couldn't make the economics work. Line work isn't supposed to be skilled. It's supposed to be monkey work that anyone can do after a banana hand out session (i.e. training).

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Coat

Surely not?

Since when have we Scots ever been able to turn down chips?

Mine's the deep-fried one.

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Anonymous Coward

Cash flow

Haemorrhaging cash gives the impression the company was losing money and going down the tubes...they clearly were.

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Silver badge
Boffin

OMG, I actually agree with an AC

From an accounting perspective, cash and equity are completely different things. So a net loss may happen while cash reserves are increasing, and you can haemmorage cash whilst actually making money.

For anyone with a basic understanding of accounting, the term "haemorraghing cash" as used in the article is misleading.

Oh, and Solomon Grundy, you obviously have a very narrow view of line work, probably due to the fact that you've had no exposure to it since the 19th century. The vast majority of manufacturing jobs in the Western world actually are highly-skilled positions, because machines/robots have long replaced people for most of the menial tasks (and a lot of the highly-skilled ones as well).

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Paris Hilton

Not the whole company

Well, certain parts of the company are printing money. If you know anything about the history of Moto/Freescale, think Somerset.

Paris? WTF not?

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Paris Hilton

Oh well,

Plenty of jobs over at the haggis factory.

Paris, because she likes a bit of meat stuffing.

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Unhappy

Terribly sad

Having been a victim of a (reasonably prominent) major redundancy programme, I feel for these folks. If they are indeed highly skilled, I wish them much luck and recommend frugality with any savings and/or redundancy payments they have, because like me, they will find that the much-discussed skills shortage is a myth.

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Flame

@Solomon Grundy

"Line work isn't supposed to be skilled. It's supposed to be monkey work that anyone can do after a banana hand out session (i.e. training)."

Huh? Have you ever been in a semicon fab or an electronics manufacturing facility? Semicon fabs are amongst the most precise, expenisve and advanced facilities on the planet. They're fanatically highly controlled. Anyone "on the line" has to seriously know what the hell they're doing or chip yield plummets.

Even somewhere making electronics, your average line worker is hardly a McD Employee. Take soldering. Yes, any monkey can solder, but to do it well (ie to a MINIMUM standard of IPC610 or J-stnd-001), not fuck up a board and do it all day in a consistent manner, that takes training and practice which roughly approximates what we all call skill.

Just because these line workers are not skilled IT specialists doesn't been they aren't skilled.

Can you please avoid dissing manufacturing in this country - it's got enough problems without people like you demeaning it as "monkey" work.

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Thumb Down

Writing on the wall...

I worked at the EKB wafer fab plant 11 years ago, just around the time that Moto were talking about upgrading part of that plant and moving the older plant equipment out to one of the Eastern European Countries (can't remember exactly which one, not too important though). Unfortunately the vast majority of the 'highly skilled workforce' completely missed the overwhelming odour of coffee known as "Costa-lessa-wages", and the rest, including the now abandoned ex digital fab plant at South Queensferry, and the never kitted out 'white elephant' outside Dunfermline, is history. Sadly EKB appears to have followed suit now, and "Silicon Glen" is now all but closed.

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Heart

Lovely turn of phrase

"the only current option appears to be potential closure"

And the bell tolls for the English language once more.

The last time Freescale announced that they were closing the plant, there was uproar - people pointed out that they had been in receipt of millions of pounds of public subsidy in the recent past to keep it open.

One wonders whether someone looked at the minimum time they had to keep it open to avoid any payback, and whether we are seeing the result here.

It's been a condemned site ever since Moto left; they've just been squeezing the last drops of profit out.

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Jobs jobs jobs!

lookee here ... http://careers.peopleclick.com/client_freescale/external/ola/JobSearchResults.xml?

Shall we all apply?

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