Bryan County-based Daniel Defense, manufacturer of firearms and accessories, has announced that they have significantly downsized their workforce over the past few weeks.
The company declined to release the number of employees affected, but said the layoffs were necessary in order to remain competitive in a slowing market. The downsizing occurred at both the company’s Bryan County, Ga., and Ridgeland, S.C. facilities.
“We waited as long as we could to make these changes because we care about our people,” Marty Daniel, president and CEO of Daniel Defense, said in a press release on Thursday.
This is not the first time the company has downsized. In 2009, the company laid off about 30 employees and furloughed nearly 100 more shortly after their grand opening and market conditions in 2014 forced the cut of about 35 employees.
Daniel founded the company in 2002 in Chatham County before moving to Bryan County in 2009 and the layoffs come as the company prepares to move into a new 300,000 square-foot facility in Black Creek. The new facility, which cost upwards of $29.5 million, will allow the company to consolidate all of their operations in Bryan County and is expected to be fully operational by mid-November.
“Those affected by these layoffs are real people with families. They are good people. I feel it’s appropriate that we be appreciative of them and remember their contribution to our success. Our hope is that they’ll find new jobs as soon as possible. We’ve hired a firm to help them with this transition as we believe this is the right thing to do,” Daniel continued in the release.
Affected employees were offered health insurance continuation benefits and outplacement services along with benefit provider information and lists of local businesses that are currently hiring, according to the release.
Any employment agreements signed as a condition of employment signed by those affected when they were hired will remain in effect. Employees were not asked or required to sign any additional documents upon their departure, according to the release, despite the social media rumors of the company requiring employees to sign non-compete agreements.