Wolverine Tube, Inc. announced that it will discontinue its U.S. plumbing tube business and will close manufacturing facilities located in Decatur.
These actions are in line with Wolverine's strategy of focusing resources on the development and sale of high performance tubular products, fabricated tube assemblies and metal joining products that promote energy efficient heat transfer technology to an expanding market and global OEM customers.
Harold M. Karp, President and Chief Operating Officer, stated "The Decatur and Booneville operations primarily serve the U.S. copper plumbing tube and smooth industrial tube markets. Demand for copper plumbing tube has significantly declined over the last several years as a result of the substitution of plastic tube in residential construction. This trend is reinforced by high copper prices. Additionally, the smooth industrial tube market is rapidly transitioning to a commodity market and the Decatur/Booneville cost structure is not competitive in either the plumbing or smooth tube markets. Wolverine's smooth tube requirements will be satisfied by a combination of production from other Wolverine locations and outsourcing."
The Decatur manufacturing operation has 440 full time and 50 temporary employees.
Wolverine Tube, Inc. is a world-class quality partner, providing its customers with copper and copper alloy tube and fabricated and metal joining products.