Wifag Sells Plant, Relocates to Polytype Facility

By: Jim Rosenberg

Having sold its manufacturing plant in Bern to heavy-duty transmission manufacturer Mali International, Swiss pressmaker Wifag has relocated to its Polytype sister company’s facility in Fribourg as part of its restructuring.

The move follows announced workforce reductions that have left Wifag with 63 employees, and a company memo said it is now selecting the management team “for the new Wifag.” The combined operation in Fribourg numbers more than 800 employees.

Mali International has employed all or most Wifag manufacturing staff in Bern and will make some Wifag parts that Polytype cannot, according to Wifag’s North America sales vice president, Tom Stuart.

“We look ahead and see numerous chances for the new Wifag as a lean enterprise in the newspaper printing machine business,” Wifag CEO Werner Tschan said in a notice informing customers of the change. “The new Wifag will be able to offer, with the exception of the manufacturing of new machines, a substantial part of the past services without change.”

Rather than new presses, the company reportedly will sell add-ons, upgrades and reconfigurations.

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