Restructuring planned at Stryker Instruments
PORTAGE, MI — Stryker Instruments division is undergoing an organizational restructuring that will mean a loss of jobs for an undisclosed number of people at the medical technologies company.
“After a thoughtful evaluation, we have determined that organizational changes are needed to help drive efficiencies across our business, including limited reductions in our workforce,” the company stated in a press release issued in response to inquiries Wednesday.
It went on to say, “These changes will allow us to invest in important areas to build new capabilities that will help us keep growing in Kalamazoo and continue meeting the needs of our customers.”
Stryker Instruments designs, manufactures and markets specialty surgical equipment, operating room products, orthopedic saws, drills and accessories. It also make advanced systems for such things as pain management and waste management.
“The Kalamazoo community has played an important role in our company’s history,” the company stated. “Our founder started the business here and today we have multiple manufacturing and corporate offices in the area. We are committed to strengthening that relationship through our upcoming expansion in Portage.”
Portage Mayor Peter Strazdas said he has not been told how many people will be affected by the restructuring and he hopes the company is working to find them other opportunities. But he said he understands that large corporations have ups and downs and hopes internal changes will help make Stryker a stronger company in the long run.
“I do understand major companies undergo restructuring and while it’s unfortunate that some people are impacted, I hope those individuals are taken care of and I also hope that Stryker continues to grow as a major employer in our region,” Strazdas said.
With about 2,800 employees in the area, Stryker is the second largest private employer in the city of Portage, behind pharmaceutical maker Pfizer Inc.
In a written response to a series of questions about the restructuring, the spokesperson stated the restructuring will have no impact on the company’s plans to build a $154 million research and development campus in Portage. Stryker has also said it plans to hire 100 additional people to help staff it.
In an email, a Stryker spokesperson said the organizational changes “will not affect our plans to build a new facility in Portage, nor are there any plans to close existing facilities in the area.”
On Tuesday night, members of the Portage City Council agreed to what may be the last things Stryker needs to move forward with the project, which will use part of 288 acres of land bordered by Ramona, Portage Road, Lovers Lane and East Milham Avenue.
Among other things, the council approved final engineering drawings, land division surveys and vehicle access to Ramona Avenue. Stryker’s instruments division plans to build 485,000 square feet of facilities that will include a state-of-the-art research and development laboratory and a bio-skills lab for research and new product development. It will also include a customer experience center, a functioning showroom, and office space for sales, marketing and support functions.
Until speaking with a company representative Wednesday, Strazdas said he was concerned about whether the research and development project would be impacted and whether the division’s core business is sound.
“They have reassured me that the (business) fundamentals are sound and that this an organizational restructuring,” he said. “… They reassured us that Stryker is still intending to move ahead with the current project as designed.”